04/19/18 – Mike Paul discusses how Starbucks is handling its Philadelphia crisis

From Washington Post:

 “Though crisis communications adviser Mike Paul would have liked to see Johnson make that visit faster, he said it was ultimately the kind of human response the occasion called for:

 ‘When you have a highly flammable emotional situation like a racial crisis you must match it with a highly emotional solution in the opposite direction,’ he said, rather than a ‘legal solution’ or a ‘branding solution.’ Speaking about Johnson’s interview on CNN Tuesday night — the CEO appeared visibly shaken while speaking — Paul said ‘when I see a CEO with my buddy [host] Don Lemon being emotional, it feels like he was honest.”

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04/17/18 – Fox 5 News Interviews Mike Paul re: Starbucks Racial Crisis


From Fox 5 News:


“In April 2018, a Starbucks manager’s actions in Philadelphia plunged the global Starbucks brand into crisis when Philly cops were called and arrested two black customers who asked to use the bathroom and then waited for a friend to arrive. They had planned to order something later. Mike Paul, a top crisis public relations expert known as The Reputation Doctor® comments on this example of racial profiling.

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01/04/18 – Crisis of the Week: Amtrak in Safety Spotlight After Derailment

From the Wall Street Journal

Mike Paul, president, Reputation Doctor: “I give Amtrak a grade of ‘C’ for its communications. I believe Mr. Anderson’s statements to date have been very incomplete, not empathetic enough and, at times, insensitive to the many victims. Amtrak’s initial statement saying the crash was an ‘incident’ with ‘some injuries’ was very unwise and smelled of statements prepared by attorneys, versus ones written in conjunction with a top crisis and public relations expert. Three passengers died, over 100 were injured [but] the initial statement proved to be a huge understatement.

“After talking with Amtrak’s president, the governor of Washington said Amtrak will pay for all victims injured and would pay for all damage done as a result of the crash. That statement was much louder than any statement from Amtrak itself on the subject of compensation. Again, [it seems communications] clearly were led by legal advice, [not] in conjunction with crisis and public relations help. Although Amtrak later showed some empathy, in my opinion it was not enough. Proper tone and attitude in communications is important; public statements filled with legalese may help in a court of law but often backfire in the court of public opinion.

“No victim wants to be part of a ‘wake-up call’ to get the attention of Amtrak to be safe for all. This statement from Mr. Anderson was highly insensitive. NTSB’s investigation will last throughout 2018 and into 2019. Long investigations and government oversight usually means more concern for brand and reputation damage among key stakeholders.”

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