By: Kate Froehlich
One of the best ways to put what you’ve learned in the classroom into use while you are a student is to tackle case studies. At AU’s Regional Conference, we were able to participate in a case competition that helped break down the process. However, this case skills can be applied in many different ways, and are a fun way for your chapter to further develop creative and effective solutions.
We talked about Jet Blue’s PR crisis of leaving a thousand passengers on their airplanes for 11 hours during bad weather, but you can use any crisis, big or small, to practice.
- Determine what the crisis is
- All of the above were applicable for Jet Blue.
- Target Markets
- We developed target markets for each of the above categories that the crisis influenced
- Reacting to issue
- Explain why
- Sorry/say you care
- Internal – tell everyone on management to make sure they’re on the same page about the message being communicated to the external markets
- All of these were general strategies we had hoped to address
- What are your goals for your communications plan and what do you hope to address?
- Specific actions or activities to make strategies happen
- We had a long list for each category. For example, under “improving,” we suggested creating a new training program and industry wide safety plans for these types of issues. Under saying sorry, we said personal letters to the people from the CEO and free flights for life.
- There will be many examples in this category. Be creative and try to think of any possible actions you could take.
- Talk messaging
- What will you tell the press? What is the main point you are trying to get out?
- We said admitting it was our mistake, and focusing on the tangible steps we plan to take in the future
Case studies help you to apply ideas you’ve read about in a tangible way, as well how to think outside the box and be creative. You also learn how to look at the whole picture and determine how best to address problems, making case studies a valuable exercise to participate in.