It might sound counterintuitive, but crisis communication can be an opportunity to enhance a company’s reputation and not just a focus of serious corporate concern.
Usually a company shifts into crisis mode when faced with significant accusations, customer harm or financial dire straits. New York-based energy company Con Edison has had its share of wide power outages caused by major weather events and natural gas incidents, along with the resulting public criticism.
In recent years the company has often been a first responder, a significant source of relief and a remedy. Those situations most often involve a natural calamity—hurricanes, wildfires or natural gas ruptures causing power outages.
Con Edison played a principal role in coming to the rescue in other parts of the country as part of Mutual Assistance, a system through which utilities help one another, sometimes at great distances, following significant calamities. The aim is usually to restore electric power.
The challenge is getting to the affected region quickly, delivering the requisite personnel, equipment and skills, as well as a willingness to sacrifice to restore service.