Diversity Crisis Communications: What to Do When Scandals Erupt

How your company handles a diversity-related crisis can make the difference between whether your leadership stays or goes and whether the public loses faith in your organization (causing plummeting stock price, for example). Here are examples of bad and good ways to handle the type of scandal Rutgers University now faces:


BAD

Did Komen’s Lack of Board Diversity Cause Its Crisis

The nonprofit breast-cancer-prevention group decided to defund Planned Parenthood, then flip-flopped after public outrage. Its CEO ended up resigning.

Lowe’s Muslim Publicity Gaffe Serves as Case Study of What Not to Do

The home-improvement chain caved in to an anti-Muslim group and stopped advertising on a reality show featuring Muslims. The public outcry was significant.

Chick-fil-A Caves on Funding Anti-Gay Groups But Is It Enough

The flip-flops from the food chain have cost it several contracts and public support.

GOOD

Lessons on Values From Ellen & jcpenney

jcpenney CEO Ron Johnson stood up quickly and very publicly for the choice of lesbian Ellen DeGeneres as company spokesperson after anti-gay One Million Moms launched a campaign to have her removed.

Ask the White Guy: Decision Making, Clarity of Values & What to Do When It Goes Horribly Wrong

When progressive corporations found out their local representatives in Tennessee supported anti-gay legislation, they were horrified and reacted swiftly to try to reverse the decision. It was too late, but their public statements were forthright and they have subsequently made sure this won’t happen again.

Latest News

Novartis: Inspiring a Daughter to Make Her Own Path

Originally published on novartis.com. Novartis is a DiversityInc Hall of Fame company. Chief Talent and People Solutions Officer Tripti Jha’s mother prioritized her learning in a rural region of India with limited opportunities for girls. At Novartis, we believe in gender equity. We continue to choose to challenge inequity, including…

California and covid-19

California Commits To Distributing 40% of Its Existing Vaccine Doses To Underserved Communities

In an effort to help save lives of Black and Brown Californians who have been hit disproportionately hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Gavin Newsom has announced a new pledge to allocate up to 40% of existing vaccine doses to the state’s underserved communities. Health officials in the state hope…