Monday, June 02, 2008

Can't Win 

Here is a story in which an organization can't win. If FEMA lets people stay in trailers, it is wrong. However, expelling them from trailers to uncertain living conditions is equally wrong in the eyes of the public. There is no way to put a "smiley face" on action or lack of it.

Sometimes organizations face these conundrums. Leaders know they are going to take a hit sooner or later. Acting without explanation or letting the problem fester are wrong choices. However, explaining the situation to those affected is guaranteed to raise resistance. There must have been a number of meetings at FEMA before it took the action of closing the camp. It would have been interesting to listen in on the discussion. There is no good PR advice in situations like this. One acts or not and takes the consequences.


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