Should Your Lawyer Write Your Talking Points?

It is not uncommon during an issues management project that we work alongside legal counsel for our clients.  Although we may have differing views on when and how to say something, we are both there to advise our clients and ensure the best outcome possible.

I talked with one of our PRGN colleagues about the topic on the podcast a few months ago.

But this week’s congressional hearing regarding antisemitism on campus had everyone wondering who had prepped these college presidents for their appearance.  Turns out it was a law firm.  And that the same law firm worked with two of the presidents independently.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not opposed to having your legal counsel as part of your team.  But where oh where was the communications team? Didn’t anyone realize how these statements would come across?  Did no one stop to think that these statements were not only tone deaf given the current situation on college campuses but that they were actually adding fuel to the fire?

It is no surprise that many are calling for their resignation – UPenn’s president has resigned, pressure is building for the two others to as well.

Yes, there is value in being prepared and having your talking points to rely on.  But, please, don’t lose your humanity in the process.

Written by
at Dec 12, 2023

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