If you have an immediate need, please call us now: (559) 321-8884
You may also email us here and we will get back to you as soon as possible.
Holly Carter is a Certified Crisis Management Professional
We respect your privacy.
CRISIS PREPAREDNESS TRAINING SEEKS TO ATTRACT WOMEN ENTREPRENEURS
(Fresno, CA) March 1st officially kicks off Women’s History Month, a time when we honor trailblazing women who are starting new businesses, creating jobs, and impacting the economy in meaningful ways. According to the National Women’s Business Council, research indicates that women business owners struggle to find resources to scale their businesses. Preparing for a threat to their business isn’t something that usually fits into a lean annual budget. One woman has set her sights on bridging this gap.
On March 15th, Carter & Co. Communications, Inc, a strategic and crisis communications firm will be holding a half-day “Crisis Preparedness Summit” and has set their sights on positioning women CEO’s and executives at the front of the line. While the event is being offered to all business owners throughout the Central Valley, Carter & Co.’s CEO, Holly Carter, is determined to have a significant turnout of women entrepreneurs at the event. Speaking at a National Women’s History Forum in 2015, Carter spoke of the unique challenges women business owners face. Carter explains, “Women have this awful habit of thinking we can do it all and then set out to prove we are right. We don’t like to ask for help and then we wonder why the percentage of female CEO’s in the Fortune 500 is only 4%. I hope we can empower women to change that mindset when it comes to preparing for a business crisis.”
Warren Buffett explains, “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.” Very few businesses survive a crisis unless they have prepared. The goal of this Crisis Preparedness Summit is to help business leaders “do things differently” now before they find themselves in the midst of a crisis.
The Crisis Preparedness Summit features nationally recognized professionals in the field of crisis management. The list of speakers includes Ron Williams, a counter-terrorism expert who guarded 4 Presidents, and Rocky Pipkin who is featured in Forbes and has protected brands of clients all the way to the Supreme Court. This action-packed half-day summit is being held at and hosted by the Clovis Veterans Memorial District and Executive Director Lorenzo Rios will serve as the Master of Ceremonies.
This event is being offered free of charge to business owners thanks to the support of sponsors of the summit. To learn more about the training or to register for this event, visit www.crisisblueprint.com.
A business crisis strikes as fast as lightning, and you need to be prepared to weather the storm. Talk about things that make you uncomfortable now, before you’re in the heart of a problem. We’ve assembled a team of experts to march you through the process, from how to handle reporters, to social media crises, to what to do in case of an active shooter. These are top industry pros, and you won’t want to miss this free half-day training. It’s not a matter of if, but when you’ll have to deal with a business crisis.
Lorenzo Rios, Clovis Veterans Memorial District, CEO – Master of Ceremonies
Rocky Pipkin, Pipkin Detective Agency, CEO
Ron T. Williams, Talon Executive Services, Inc., CEO
Holly Carter, Carter & Co. Communications, Inc., CEO
Wednesday, March 15, 2017
Check-in: 8:30 AM
Event: 9 AM – 12:00 Noon
Clovis Veterans Memorial District
808 4th Street, Clovis, CA 93612
Register by clicking here.
Holly Carter’s presentation is titled Ag and Crisis Communications: When Things Go Wrong. The World Ag Expo presentation will ask if your business is prepared in the event of a crisis. Holly will provide professional insight on what to do in – and before – a worst case scenario. If the media came to your facility in the wake of an accident or food borne illness, are you prepared to respond? Knowing how to react in these crisis situations is critical and affects the success and reputation of your brand. We will walk you through the steps of preparing your organization to communicate with employees, customers, suppliers, media and the general public when a crisis hits. Join us for a discussion you can’t afford to miss.
NO RSVP is required, but it would help us if you let us know you’re coming. Just go to our Eventbrite page and get your “free ticket” (The ticket is not required, it just lets us know that you’re coming). Please note that this presentation is free to attendees of The World Ag Expo, but there is an admission charge for the Expo itself.
The presentation is hosted by Women in Agriculture for Mentoring and Empowerment.
(AP) — A former employee at a Versace outlet store in the San Francisco Bay Area is suing the global retailer for discriminating against him and customers, according to a lawsuit filed in Alameda County court.
The East Bay Times reports that 23-year-old Christopher Sampino alleges that store employees used a code to notify each other when black customers walked into the Livermore store.
He claims a manager told him to casually say “D410” when a black person entered the store. D410 is a code used in the store for black clothing.
Sampino claims he was fired in October for being biracial after working in the store for two weeks.
The lawsuit filed in November also alleges that Sampino was told he was fired because he did not “know luxury” and “had not lived the luxury life.”
The company has filed a request to move the case from state court to a federal court.
Versace denied the allegations in a statement to the newspaper.
“Versace believes strongly in equal opportunity, as an employer and a retailer. We do not tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, national origin or any other characteristic protected by our civil rights laws. We have denied the allegations in this suit, and we will not comment further concerning pending litigation,” the statement says.
Something became very apparent as we looked back at crisis communication stories in 2016. We found two kinds of business crises; those that happen to you, and those you inflict upon yourself. If a crisis happens to your company, you should be prepared and able to jump right into your crisis plan. But if the crisis is caused by you shooting yourself in the foot, the first thing you should do is stop shooting!
We selected a few well publicized crises from 2016 and categorized them. We chose to go easy on Yahoo and Tesla, since both of those started externally and happened to these companies. Then our list went haywire – was it possible that the rest were self-inflicted crises? Wells Fargo, EpiPen, Ryan Lochte, Samsung, Cinemark, the Wounded Warrior Project and Chipotle’s – were all self inflicted.
We spend a lot of time preaching about the Crisis Communications Plan – your ability to prepare for and react to a crisis. We find that this is often put in terms of defending yourself from outside threats. But are businesses doing enough to prepare for internally created crises? Maybe we should take a moment to look at and learn from these three case studies from 2016.
In 2012, the Cinemark theater in Aurora, Colorado became home to an unbelievable tragedy. An armed gunman killed 12 people and injured 70. This was a horrific crisis. However, the business dealings after the crisis gave rise to a new set of problems in 2016. Victims and their families sued Cinemark, claiming the theater chain didn’t provide adequate security the day of the attack. The court ruled in Cinemark’s favor, and the corporation escaped with their reputation intact. That should have been the signal for Cinemark to focus on strengthening and growing their brand.
Enter what we call the “business as usual” mode without a crisis plan. When a business is sued by their customers for something they didn’t cause, it’s a slippery slope. When Cinemark emerged victorious from the lawsuit, they decided to go after the victims of the 2012 Aurora shooting for legal fees.
Did they have a right to do this? Absolutely. Should they have realized this was a horrible idea? Well, duh. They eventually settled, but the damage was done. The #BoycottCinemark hashtag went viral, Newtown filmmakers pulled their film from Cinemark theaters, and the company got compared online to Subway sexual predator Jared Vogel, who also sued victims.
Oh Chipotle, can’t you just get your act together? America loves your fresh burrito goodness, but you must really want us to “hit the road, Jack.” You all know that Chipotle was spreading E. coli as thick as chunky guacamole in 2015. They managed this disaster poorly, tanking both stock value and customer trust.
Remember what we said earlier? The first thing to do after you’ve shot yourself in the foot is to stop shooting. Instead, Chipotle reloaded the gun. Breaking news alerted hungry customers that one of Chipotle’s top execs got caught with white powder on his hands, and it wasn’t from making tortillas. Mark Crumpacker, Chief Creative Officer, was busted for purchasing cocaine numerous times from a drug ring in New York. Holy guacamole!
Chipotle chose to publicly stand behind Crumpacker in a way that left a rotten taste in customers’ mouths. Chipotle spokesman Chris Arnold stated “Our executive team and board of directors believe that having Mark continue to lead our marketing and development efforts is what is best for our company, our employees, our investors and our future.” Huh? Really?
Standing behind someone when they ask for help is admirable. Bailing them out of jail in time for a marcomm meeting is something different. Were they really concerned about saving a dying brand or more excited about rolling out their new Chorizo Burrito coined as a “low calorie” option which turned out to be one of the higher calorie items on the menu? As the Chipotle brand dwindles, the faint echos of hungry customers can be heard chanting, “Yo quiero Taco Bell.”
Liar liar pants on fire is what Samsung said to their customers when cell phones began to spontaneously combust… that is until the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 was banned from airlines globally. A case of a big industrial design snafu, the new product line went TNT leaving their customers steaming mad. Samsung could have pulled the fire extinguisher out right away and taken the Galaxy Note 7 off the shelves while expediting refunds to keep their customers happy. Instead, Samsung started replacing the phones, claiming the problem was fixed. But the fix was not really a fix, which became apparent when reports emerged of replacement phones bursting into flames.
Now Samsung is working quickly to get the next generation of phones to market and they finally appear to be handling claims with some care. Meanwhile, customers are simmering down and Samsung is discovering the meaning of “brand loyalty”. Apparently, Samsung customers believe in second chances. Stay tuned for more on this story in 2017…
For goodness sake, do you have a Crisis Plan yet? The brands who survive a crisis are the brands who prepare for a crisis. This year tells us something more, though, doesn’t it? While a Crisis Plan gets you up to speed and ready to react, maybe you need a pro who knows the power of public opinion; someone who can tell you if the decision you’re about to implement is a wrecking ball in the making.
Let’s summarize. A lot of brands were their own worst enemies in 2016 and you can learn from this. Remember, it isn’t IF but WHEN a crisis will occur. Know that Carter & Co.Communications is here, every day, always ready to step up to the plate. We will help you create your crisis plan; we will walk with you, we will walk for you when anything threatens your brand. Why not make 2017 your best year yet by ensuring your brand is protected no matter what surprises come your way.
If you would like to build a Crisis Plan, please contact us here.
While watching this video, how many of the warning signs did you see? After a tragedy like the Sandy Hook shooting, we all look back and attempt to find the warning signs to prevent future tragedies from occurring. Sandy Hook Promise, a 501c3 non profit organization was created in response to the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting. The nonprofit’s primary concern about warning signs is that “people aren’t trained to recognize them.”
The video is a chilling reminder that even when it’s business as usual, we need to be trained to watch for warning signs. Without training, the warning signs will often go unseen and can lead to another tragedy.
The time to prepare for a crisis is now.
Carter & Co. offers Crisis Preparedness Workshop, including Active Shooter, Violence in the Workplace Prevention Training. These hands on workshops will equip your employees to recognize the warning signs in hopes of preventing a tragedy in the workplace.
Several media outlets reported this week that Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HTT) has received $109 million in investments. HTT is one of the major firms designing Elon Musk’s high-speed tube transportation system. We’ve always read articles like this with a little bit of envy. They list individuals and businesses who are on the ground floor doing work for stock options. How do these people get so lucky? Well, now we know.
The list you’ll see in the news are the “heavy hitters”, but there are also some impressive and mighty little companies doing essential work to make the Hyperloop dream come true. Carter & Co. is one of them. President and CEO Holly Carter saw the promise of Hyperloop as soon as they began assembling their amazing team, and she knew they would need a public affairs consultant, especially where local government affairs was concerned. Hyperloop welcomed her in on the ground floor. Today, Carter & Co. provides land use support, specifically ensuring that permitting processes are successful.
“I work with the HTT leadership team,” Carter said. “I’ve worked very hard to get local and state government support, and we’ve been extremely successful in smoothing the way for test development.”
Carter believes strongly in the HTT vision, calling herself a “Hyperloop Evangelist”.
“Los Angeles to San Francisco in half an hour!” she says. “The people building this system see the future, and they don’t want to waste any time getting there.”
Carter & Co. sees itself as part of a team making the dream of a half-hour trip through California a reality, and is quick to point out that this system would cause no disruption to farm land.
Read more at L.A. Biz. (http://www.bizjournals.com/losangeles/news/2016/12/01/hyperloop-transportation-technologies-investments.html)
Most Business owners are passionate about the political process, voicing their opinions with their words and dollars. Should business owners get publicly involved in politics? Are there consequences? Let’s ask Kellogg’s.
Just when you thought that the election was over, Kellogg’s and Breitbart started a food fight with each other. The proclaimed “war” began when Kellogg’s pulled all their advertisements with Breitbart, a heavily conservative media website.
Breakfast cereal enthusiasts across the country ended up with a sudden case of indigestion after numerous Kellogg’s ads were found on Breitbart’s Website. In response, Kellogg’s spokesperson issued a statement saying, “We regularly work with our media buying partners to ensure our ads do not appear on sites that aren’t aligned with our values as a company. This involves reviewing websites where ads could potentially be placed using filtering technology to assess site content. As you can imagine, there is a very large volume of websites, so occasionally something is inadvertently missed.”
Upon notification of Kellogg’s decision to pull its ads, Breitbart cried sour milk and called upon it’s estimated 45 million readership to immediately boycott all Kellogg’s’ products. Breitbart President and CEO, Larry Solov said, “Pulling its advertising from Breitbart News is a decidedly cynical and un-American act. The only sensible response is to join together and boycott Kellogg’s products in protest.”
When starting a food fight, understand that no matter the issue, you are going to get dirty. Kellogg’s, like many businesses, make decisions based on what they believe is the right thing to do. But the question remains – is mixing business and politics akin to mixing oil and vinegar? Probably, and in this case, it’s doubtful that either side will win.
That’s the lesson for all businesses, big and small – if you mix your professional life with your political beliefs – you had better be prepared to deal with the backlash. When it does, the snap crackle and pop you hear will be coming from unhappy customers or worse. Take a tip from this team of gladiators that live in the world of crisis communications and are regularly called upon to remedy the mistakes business owners make; It isn’t a matter of if, but when a crisis will occur. And the people who plan for a crisis, are the people who survive a crisis. .
So how can you prevent your brand from becoming soggy as the consumers run to your competitor? It starts with the creation of a Crisis Communications Plan that positions you to to rapidly respond when you find your customers crying over spilled milk. Don’t know where to start? You are in luck. Carter & Co. Communications is your one stop shop for crises big and small. So Why not plan for a crisis rather than get caught having to eat your words instead of your cereal for breakfast?