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May 3, 2012
Lessons from the Secret Service: Radical Awareness
 
The Secret Service failed to protect its own back when some of its agents went awry in Columbia. Shame, writes Steve Cody, of Peppercorn,  in Inc. magazine, a crisis caused by rogue employees can be anticipated and managed. He offers five tips on how to do that, starting with "Anticipate and simulate..."

You would think that agencies like the Secret Service and its home agency, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, would be well-schooled in crisis communication. But remember, with sadness, that it's often true: "The bigger they are, the harder they fall." Attentiveness to what might happen — as bizarre as Secret Service agents hiring prostitutes might seem — is the beginning of an effective response anywhere. Call it "the imagining principle."

Steve Cody ends his post by urging that a diligent post mortem be conducted when a crisis occurs. We hope and trust that one is underway at the Secret Service.  

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Doug Bedell has a background in journalism and PR and is the owner of Resource Relations LLC in Central PA, focusing on organizational and crisis communication. He’s the community manager of SimplyFair.net, a social network on fairness. On the Web, Doug’s at www.ResourceRelations.com. On Twitter, he’s @DougBeetle.
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