Inside this issue
Dear friends! It's been a busy summer already, hasn't it?!
Are you ready to go on an adventure in this email? I hope so because we're about to cover a lot of territory!
Our first stop on the journey is reputation management in the digital age. Last month, I went to Chicago for a few days and took a master class on crisis communications. It's interesting to me how much overlap there is between what companies need to do to make relationships right again and what is best in our personal relationships. It may seem like common sense that caring would be the first move but most people (and organizations) want to self protect before proceeding. The digital age creates an expectation and urgency that isn't very forgiving though. Better to have a plan and move forward fast. Crisis, in the Greek sense of the word, means decision or choice, especially at a turning point. Check out the story below to learn more.
The other thing I've noticed this summer is how many companies and organizations are calling us for branding and positioning work. A crowded marketplace means being crystal clear about your message is a distinct competitive advantage. How would you measure your messaging? Is it clear? These are good questions to ask and if it feels a little murky, like Lake Mendota sometimes, it probably is.
On a different note, we're gearing up to produce Women's Entrepreneurship Day in Wisconsin again! If you missed it last year, get your ticket now. We sold out before the event in 2017! Tickets are on sale now with early bird pricing (Just $119 for a full day jam packed with information, ideas and inspiration). You may notice we have a brand new website too!
In recent weeks, we've all read about the suicides of famous people who were almost inconceivably high-functioning, demonstrating that the gap between public triumph and private despair is treacherous. Too many people are living lives of quiet desperation. They say this costs workplaces many millions which is worth noting but what is it costing our country? What is the cost when human potential is wasted? I've always believed there isn't a problem on this planet that can't be solved if we could pull together instead of pull apart.
So, I decided to tell my own story and I've decided to walk for the National Association of Mental Illness on October 7th. I'm on the Madison Area Music Awards team. It seems as though so many of the most tender-hearted people I know are musicians and artists. To read more about my own story and why this is personal to me, click here. And wherever you're at, know you're not broken. Your life has value. Ask the questions. Seek the answers. Know you are not alone.
Last but not least, it is a radical idea to create hope in a cynical world, isn't it? But as leaders, isn't that our job? As a visionary, I tend to see the world more as I imagine it could be than the way it actually is. This is where Women's Entrepreneurship Day came from. It was unacceptable to me (and many others) that women were lagging so far behind in terms of entrepreneurial success. The same is true of our mental health. Our times certainly create the perfect storm for a deep sense of either gratitude or unhappiness. How can we, as leaders, change the narrative so that all may prosper?
Is your organization prepared for a crisis? Do you have a plan? Have statements been written in the event of a crisis? Do you know how to frame your position in the event of a crisis? Has your social media team been made aware of what to do in the event of a crisis? Who will be in charge? Does your organization tend to respond quickly or slowly when there is a potential crisis? When would you normally call in the PR team? What is the worst question you can be asked if there is a crisis?
These are some of the questions every organization should be prepared to answer.
In June, Laura spent a few days attending a Master Class in Chicago earning a certificate in Crisis Communications and Reputation Management through the Public Relations Society of America. She's been providing PR crisis counsel since the mid-90's but so much has changed in the world since then.
She was joined by the directors of PR from universities, major healthcare organizations, financial institutions, corporations and nonprofit organizations.
Can you guess what their greatest fears are? Are they your greatest fears?
More than half the class mentioned an active shooter on their campus. Others mentioned security breaches, sexual harassment, social media firestorms and ethics violations. We live in a world where news travels very quickly. Organizations that are prepared, retain and can even gain stock value, earn trust and prosper in multiple ways.
Here's a quick lesson on framing:
Ineffective framing happens when people are rushed. The research shows that the first window of time after a crisis happens is only 45 minutes. Having a statement prepared in advance as a guideline can help tremendously. A statement should include the following:
“Silence when there is an expectation of caring is toxic.”
You're invited to Women's Entrepreneurship Day Wisconsin
The 2018 Women's Entrepreneurship Day Conference planning is in motion! Thanks to all of our incredible partners in our inaugural year, 400 women were part of a greater story - one of possibility, economic empowerment, confidence, building and community. Half of the women surveyed said they were more likely to seek capital as a result of attending, 96% felt more confident as a result and 100% said they will be back!
As a WEDWisconsin participant, you're part of the global movement celebrating, empowering and supporting women in business to alleviate poverty. This day is celebrated in 144 countries worldwide, empowering 4 billion unique women on the planet and inspiring 250 million girls living in poverty.
Entrepreneurs at every stage and every age will be gathering again on Monday, November 19, 2018 in Madison at Women’s Entrepreneurship Day Wisconsin. Get your tickets now and sponsors, now is the time to get your plans in place! We expect to sell out again this year so make plans now and invest in you!
Early Bird registration is now open through October 15th. Buy your ticket now and save $30 off of the regular ticket price of $149.
Not from this region? Check out the WED Global Site and join the movement in your part of the world!
Strong Women Strong Coffee
Fueled by caffeine and passion, this FREE morning networking event is for women focused on achieving something fresh for their business or themselves. Laura Gallagher will be the guest speaker on September 28th. Registration for this event is free and it will be an energetic, inspiring and conversational way to start your day!
September 28, 2018
2300 S Park St
7:30am - 9:00am
Walk for mental health
With more than 85 NAMIWalks in 2018, join the movement and walk for mental health this year! Each NAMIWalks is a 5K event that raises awareness and funds for NAMI organizations across the country.
Most of us are either directly or indirectly affected by mental illness. The stigma attached often prevents people from seeking treatment though. Depression, for example, costs employers more than any other health condition and yet many keep silent. This is just one of the many reasons why supporting NAMI is so important.
On October 7th, Laura will be part of the Madison Area Music Award's team. Her goal is to raise $1,000 as well as awareness for the life-saving work NAMI is doing.
To learn more about Laura's personal reasons for being a NAMI supporter, read her article here: Too many people are depressed, anxious, suicidal and manic.
October 7, 2018
Check in: 10:30am
Start time: 12:00pm
Now it's third year, this conference is for places of worship and other parachurch organizations to stay informed of how accounting and other financial related issues affect an organization. Laura Gallagher and Betsy Ezell will be back this year to talk about crisis communications and reputation management in the Digital Age.
October 30, 2018
9:00am – 4:00pm