THE REDSKINS MAY NEED TO RETHINK THEIR CRISIS MANAGEMENT GAME PLAN
September 11, 2015
The Washington Redskins are getting into some serious social media drama.
For those of you who haven’t been following the latest Redskins debacle, here’s what’s happening:
Quarterback Robert Griffin III was named the starter in February. Because he suffered from a concussion and has not been cleared by the NFL, if Griffin gets injured again, that would guarantee him his $16.1 million salary for 2016 and they would be unable to cut him from the team—a commitment the coach is apparently unwilling to make. Kirk Cousins ended up being named starting QB in the meantime.
Griffin then “liked” an Instagram post that bashed the coach for choosing Cousins over him. Griffin was quick to point fingers at an intern, who he claimed to be the person liking the post. Sure!
If that wasn’t enough, Jessica McCloughan, the wife of the Redskins’ General Manager, had some questions for ESPN reporter Dianna Russini, on how she stumbled upon this information…
Well, that escalated quickly.
The Redskins’ first response to this disaster was to deny that this tweet was ever sent. Then, the organization claimed that tweet was in fact sent, but from a fake account. Then, the Redskins’ admitted that the tweet was real and issued a statement apologizing for the inappropriate attack on Russini.
The takeaway here is that you can’t hide from the truth. In the midst of a PR crisis, lying will only dig you deeper into a hole. Best practice says to own up, apologize sincerely and move forward. Hillary Clinton??
Social media allows for individual messages to be sent out to mass audiences that are out of an organization’s hands, yet they directly reflect on the organization’s values. Whether it’s a “like” made by a team member, or a tweet sent from a relative of a member of the organization, reporters will take notice—that’s their job.
The media is watching every move organizations and companies make; what they’re tweeting, liking, following, etc. Inform your staff to be aware and cautious of what they are posting.
Let’s just hope the Redskins play football better than they handle crisis management!
by: Yarden Cohen