There is a difference between issues and crisis management, and the former can often result in the latter if not handled correctly.

Issues generally follow a lifecycle and the movement between phases can be swift if handled correctly. Critical is knowing when to escalate an issue and begin handling it proactively to prevent a crisis from happening. Corporate Image assists in monitoring issue trends and acting proactively to prevent the evolution into crisis. While it may be difficult to anticipate the exact nature of a crisis that may occur, it is distinctly possible to anticipate and plan for reputation risk to position yourself more effectively to handle one.

For the bulk of our clients, we have formulated extensive issues guides for the company that are used, both internally and externally, as a resource for quick reference on the company’s view on certain issues. Not only does this make responding to media or other stakeholders much faster, but if made available internally, helps employees become key ambassadors for the company by being able to articulate the company’s position on key issues.

An effective issues and reputation management strategy comes when Corporate Image is given access to information, trends and research to enable us to anticipate possible pitfalls.

We work with our clients to identify and assess existing crisis materials and plans, including business continuity, operational risk, communications/reputational risk plans – looking diagnostically at all aspects of preparedness which includes a SWAT analysis of the company’s risks, stakeholder alignment, capacity to handle a crisis and digital taxonomy.