Lack of Transparency Messes with the Bottom Line

Dollar Bill with a bewildered George Washington

Image Courtesy: Reuben Ingber

Tell the truth; tell it all; tell it first. That’s very often the credo for crisis advisers. Skeptical C-suite folks may very easily pooh-pooh the notion in favor of advice from a lawyer–however, what saves a company in a court of law may crucify it in the court of public opinion.

Such has been the case, recently, with Pinnacle Holdings (JSE:PNC), a technology company headquartered in South Africa. It seems Executive Director Takalani Tshivhase, the company’s greatest shareholder, has been charged with both bribery and corruption. Continue reading

Transparency is One of the Best Crisis Policies

liesStudying crisis communication theory has led me to examine a myriad of fascinating cases. The primary ethic that seems to continually resurface in all successful cases is transparency.

Bruce Hennes of Hennes Paynter Communications in Cleveland, Ohio, a leading crisis communications firm, told me the core values of his practice are “tell the truth, tell it all, tell it first.” While seemingly obvious, lack of transparency is often the spark that causes a small incident to erupt in the flames of a full-fledged crisis.

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