In her latest article for Mid-Market Report, Gina Rubel, Founder and CEO of Furia Rubel, discussed the college admissions scandal that has captured the nation’s attention. The crisis has rocked not only mega-rich celebrities and senior executives, but also everyday people.
Rubel wrote: “As a crisis communications professional, PR agency owner and lawyer, the headlines and responses have been breathtaking, and not in a good way.”
The case involving Gordon Caplan, the former co-chairman of Willkie Farr & Gallagher, was particularly notable to Rubel in the way the firm handled its response. First, she found their response measured and lukewarm. Second, it was delivered by a crisis communications professional rather than a spokesperson from the law firm.
She offered five lessons law firms should learn from this incident:
- A company statement should almost always come from a spokesperson with leadership responsibilities.
- Statements should be shared where the audiences are. By not sharing it more publicly, people are drawing their own conclusions.
- Consider all audiences.
- Expect the unexpected and get ahead of the story.
- Communicate openly within the confines of the law.