Padilla president Matt Kucharski offers some pointers on how firms can make the most of the “new reality” they are facing in the latest installment of “PR’s Top Pros Talk,” a video interview series produced by D S Simon Media in partnership with O’Dwyer’s.

Kucharski’s team at Padilla has been conducting what he calls “an ethnography study of the C-Suite,” which looks at how executives at a range of companies are dealing with the changes that have resulted from the coronavirus crisis and the wave of racial unrest that followed the killing of George Floyd.

He says that the expectations of both a company’s employees and its clients are changing to adjust to the new environment. Those changing expectations are leading to a greater appreciation of the role that strategic communications play.

Top of the list for communicators, Kucharski says, is transparency—which is leading to a greater demand for company leaders and spokespeople to get out in front of the public themselves to deliver their messages. “You have to put a face and a voice to the organization,” he notes, “and there’s no better way to do that then through senior leadership and obviously video.”

He also says that a big part of transparency is to admit when you don’t have an immediate answer or solution to a problem. “It’s OK to say I don’t know,” he says, “and that we’re going to work through this.”

Despite the challenges, Kucharski sees a positive side to the ever-changing situation. “Employees and customers have this opportunity to look at how each one of these brands is responding to these life-changing events and determining whether or not their character and their reputation is reflective of that.”

All of the interviews in the “PR's Top Pros Talk” series can be seen here.

Interested in taking part? Contact Doug Simon at [email protected]

D S Simon Media helps clients get their stories on television through satellite media tours and by producing and distributing content to the media. The company also produces live social media events.