In 30+ years of doing professional public relations and crisis communications I haven't seen any company behave as diabolically as P&O Ferries. For our international readers, the TL;DR (too long; did not read) is P&O Ferries recalled all its ships to dock, so it could sack everyone and replace all its workers with cheaper agency workers. It did it using a pre-recorded video message.
I've written a short article to share some of my personal and professional thoughts.
It's already received some great feedback. Paul Holmes, founder of PRovoke Media, said:
"For a necessarily "hot" take (given the time frame) this is a brilliant analysis by @stuartbruce -- in a just world, this ends with P&O shareholders losing every penny."
Charles Arthur, former technology editor of The Guardian, said:
"Good piece by Stuart on P+O’s “disasterclass” (© @alexwickham) in PR and, well, everything."
Risks and crisis communications expert Rod Cartwright, who advised Malaysia Airlines in the months following the disappearance of flight MH370 said:
"I was going to write something on the @POferries #crisis. Instead, just read this brilliant piece by @stuartbruce. As I say so often, there are rarely true #pr crises - just crises of #leadership, #governance, #strategy, #culture and #humanity. This is all of these and worse.
Maritime PR expert Ben Pinnington, author of Making Waves - PR strategies to transform your maritime business, said:
"Powerful blog from Stuart - another chastening PR experience for the maritime industry."