I’ve taught public relations for many years and at many different colleges and universities – including Butler County Community College.
Crisis management is so significant to public relations that I dedicate two weeks to teaching about how to confront adversity.
Honesty, transparency and being proactive are essential to dealing with a crisis. When faced with adversity in years past, BP Oil, Domino’s Pizza and Exxon failed. Johnson & Johnson and Pepsi thrived.
An organization’s true moral compass will become clear when faced with such adversity, I tell students. This is particularly true during the period of “escalating events” in a crisis lifespan.
I am proud to say our college has shined over the past three weeks. We have shared information in a timely manner with our internal and external stakeholders, including the media, whether the news be good or bad.
The late, great former Steelers head coach Chuck Noll often cited a “whatever-it-takes” attitude that lifted his team to four Super Bowls in six years beginning in 1975.
As president of a community college ranked No. 1 in Pennsylvania five times beginning in 2015, I can easily borrow the term from the Emperor Chas and apply it to BC3.
Our shift to remote instruction and a work-at-home model was a heavy lift, but went off flawlessly thanks to dedicated faculty, staff, trustees and students. No griping. No complaining. Just getting the job done with that “whatever-it-takes” attitude for the betterment of our most important asset – BC3’s students.
These are unique times. BC3 has been up to the challenge. I am confident that will continue, regardless of how long our country is confronted with the COVID-19 crisis.