May 28, 2019

Mark Hubbard Details Crisis Management Strategies in Interview with CCBJ

McGuireWoods Consulting senior vice president, Mark Hubbard, recently sat down with the Corporate Counsel Business Journal to discuss best practices when publicly responding to a crisis.

Hubbard leads crisis communications and public relations efforts for McGuireWoods Consulting’s in-house advocacy and mobilization team, working with companies to weigh long-term risks against immediate publicity concerns.

In a May 14 interview, Hubbard spoke about common themes, managing publicity priorities and his approach to representing individuals versus corporations.

“The most important objective for any company or entity that's facing a reputational crisis is to gather facts quickly, determine the fact-based story that you want to tell, and then begin sharing that information and narrative immediately,” Hubbard said.

Preparation and planning is important – in the middle of a crisis there is usually no time to develop a comprehensive strategy and process.

“The bottom line is this: if you’re not telling your own story, others are going to be doing the talking for you, and that’s extremely risky,” he said.

In addition, reputation management is just as important as crisis communications.

“There's a fine line between what you can say in the court of public opinion and what you can say that will influence what happens in a court of law. And that has to be part of the strategy,” Hubbard noted. “That’s why having a communications team embedded with your litigation team can make a significant difference. It's a unique service the team at McGuireWoods and McGuireWoods Consulting offer to our clients by having both under the same roof.”