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Stand Above.

Our clients’ industries are changing. Communication strategies are changing. Baretz+Brunelle is changing. And we have thoughts to share on all of it.

How Social Media Hurt One Coach's Career ... and a University's Reputation

Posted by Jason Milch on Nov 30, 2017 12:37:17 PM

For a few hours last weekend, Greg Schiano was head football coach at the University of Tennessee – until, amid online protests, the school caved to public pressure and rescinded its offer.

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Topics: reputational risk, social media, University of Tennessee, PR

Boies Crisis is an Eye-Opener for Law Firms with High-Profile Clients

Posted by Jason Milch on Nov 9, 2017 12:04:19 PM

Famed litigator David Boies and his firm, Boies Schiller & Flexner, are currently living a legal, ethical and PR nightmare. News broke this week that Boies and his firm, while representing disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, hired a security firm to uncover “dirt” about Weinstein’s accusers and The New York Times journalists in an attempt to stop the publication of negative stories about Weinstein in The Times. That alone is ethically questionable, but the fact that The New York Times was also a Boies Schiller client elevated this to an entirely new level of crisis, and ultimately resulted in The Times firing Boies Schiller.

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Topics: reputational risk, Big Law, crisis communications, law firms

Managing a PR Crisis: Muting the Impact of Rogue Employees

Posted by Jason Milch + Jessica Klein on Sep 14, 2017 11:30:00 AM

One of the benefits of social media and electronic communications is that they give a public voice to those who might not otherwise have one. Those same tools, however, can cause headaches for businesses, which are often conflicted between embracing their employees’ right to express themselves and ensuring that those expressions do not harm the company. As Google’s recent experience shows, in today’s world there is little a company can do to prevent rogue employees from broadcasting their views. The important thing, instead, is how companies respond.

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Topics: Insider, crisis, reputational risk, Communications, Public Relations

The Mooch’s Biggest Mistake

Posted by Cari Brunelle on Aug 3, 2017 3:28:00 PM

It’s difficult to pinpoint just one thing Anthony Scaramucci did to seal his fate in his short stint as the White House communications director. After all, there’s so much to choose from. So many titillating quotes, so many headlines and so many new phrases coined in his brief tenure (“White House Chaos” being one of the more mundane). “The Mooch” became the news story for 10 days — and that, above all else, is the primary reason for his downfall. His biggest mistake was in violating the No. 1 rule for all spokespeople: Don’t become the story.

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Topics: reputational risk, White House, media relations, crisis communications

The Reputational Risk of Advising the White House

Posted by John Ford on Jul 20, 2017 10:43:08 AM

Until recently, a law firm wouldn’t think twice about working for a sitting U.S. president, members of his cabinet, or an executive branch agency. Such an engagement would be a feather in the cap of any firm—one to be bragged about, subtly or otherwise. But times change, and among the many norms that the 45th president has threatened to turn on its head is the reputational effect of being associated with the White House.

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Topics: crisis, reputational risk, politics