ST. LOUIS—FleishmanHillard has appointed new leadership for its global crisis management team. Brian West, based in Singapore, will serve as the firm’s global crisis management lead and also will lead the crisis team in Asia Pacific. Chris Nelson, based in New York, will lead crisis management for the Americas, and James Dunny, based in Dublin, will serve as lead for EMEA.
The three will oversee a team that includes more than 100 of FleishmanHillard’s most senior crisis counselors.
West, a senior vice president and senior partner, has served as interim chair of the firm’s global crisis practice since early 2013. He has overseen the introduction of FleishmanHillard’s new crisis management methodology A.R.C. (Assess. Resolve. Control.), and he has helped build an internal training program that certifies the firm’s crisis counselors through a proprietary program.
Nelson, a senior vice president and partner, has more than 20 years’ experience as a crisis management consultant. Before joining FleishmanHillard, Nelson headed Ketchum’s North American crisis preparedness, issues management, crisis response and litigation communications capabilities.
Dunny, the new head of FleishmanHilllard’s EMEA crisis management team, has nearly two decades of experience, most recently with Murray Consultants and before that with Weber Shandwick.
“You can’t buy time in a crisis,” says West. “You need to have identified and evaluated all your risks and planned for the worst. Companies need the right social media listening tools, a shortened chain of command and a multiplatform newsroom to respond to a crisis, harnessing the power of social media to reach stakeholders directly while also utilizing traditional media. Almost every day, we see an example of another company failing in the new age of crisis management.
“Crisis plans are no longer enough. Clients must now be able to respond in social media channels within minutes.”