It isn’t always easy to keep you cool and not get angry when the media reports something about your company or industry that you think is biased or wrong. While letting off steam might feel good momentarily, it has several far-reaching negative consequences such as damaging employee morale and even influence employee retention. Poor judgments in reacting to media could adversely affect the overall image of the company. So how do successful leaders keep their emotions under control?
- Restrained Social media Behaviour – If something that has negative impact on your company’s brand image is out there in the world, in any form of media, the best thing to do would be to avoid getting into an argument with the journalist who has written the piece or other public figures, especially on social media. Knee jerk reactions get you nowhere except towards more bad press. What’s worse is that on the internet, it will remain forever, as an example of untoward behaviour.
- Find solutions, not problems – Leaders who own responsibility instead of appointing blame have a good chance of actually solving the problems before them. To do this, they need to focus on what went wrong and not who can be blamed for it. Furthermore, by accepting responsibility for the team, good leaders can project the right image to the employees, earning big loyalty points.
- Look at the big picture – The news today might make you wince but what sort of long-term ramifications does it have? Will it still matter five or ten years from now? If you can sit down with your team and discuss this, ask this question. If the answer is no, then maybe it’s time everyone took a break and came back to the problem with a fresh perspective. But if the answer is yes, then you have to focus on the next steps, especially for damage control.
- Damage control – If the situation does require intervention, then discuss all the steps that you need to take with your team, and especially consult with your PR team. Decide on the approach that you will take and stick with it. What consumers must know is your consistency in how you handled the situation. If there are ways in which you can redress the situation, then go ahead once the approach has been finalised and work on how you can rebuild brand perception.
If a situation appears unfair and makes you angry about media and the role it plays in developing your brand perception, the best thing to do would be to stay put and not take any impulsive steps. Focus on all the good that your company has done and craft a counter narrative that can be used to bolster your PR and rebuild your brand.