The Biggest Crisis Communications Story of the Year—Could There Really Be Just One?

Narrowing it down is almost impossible, what with so many strong qualifiers in the running. Samsung, Uber, Equifax, Delta, United—well that last one was a biggie. Let’s delve into it for a moment.

Beyond the terrible, customer-dragging incident itself, United’s nightmare was due to many factors. They kept it in the news too long due to inaction, then the action they took wasn’t enough. That’s because they didn’t understand the consumer anger that was building. It demonstrated the arrogant culture of the airline industry that has been pervasive for years because of their monopoly on routes. In today’s social media age, it is absurd to think you can threaten or bully the consumer or hide from your mistakes.

Because they acted so slowly and incompletely, the bad press just kept growing. The fact that there was such a powerful visual that was being replayed again and again certainly didn’t help. That’s why it’s so important to take responsibility—if not for the incident, then certainly for doing all you can to contribute to a solution.

And, in case you were under a rock this year, here’s your chance to relive these crisis fails:

  1. Samsung
  2. Uber
  3. Equifax
  4. Delta
  5. United Airlines
Have questions or thoughts? Reach out to to continue the conversation.