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Using my RSS feed on NewsBlur I came across an interesting post on Social Media Today, which outlines the power of an apology using the Findus horse-meat scandal as an example. I found this post to an interesting and entertaining read and very relevant to the PR component of my university degree.

The article states that

An apology is one of the most important elements in a crisis management plan. It can negate much of the criticism that is likely to be streaming in, and can open the door for more positive and two-way communication with stakeholders.

Best Practice for apologies would suggest the inclusion of a number of key elements in any public apology. These are often described as the 5Cs:

Best             Practice Description
Compassion start by expressing your heartfelt condolences
Concern acknowledge concern of customers and stakeholders
Commitment Make clear you will get to the bottom of what has gone wrong and ensure that it will never happen again
Control make it clear the crisis is being taken seriously and the response will be managed and controlled from the top
Communication provide regular updates and information to stakeholders

So who in regards to the scandal, who won the race and who came in as late runners?

  1. Tesco
  2. Burger King
  3. Aldi
  4. Findus

To view article click here