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PR Firm strategy needed to regain the public trust?

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PR Firm strategy needed to regain the public trust?

Old 26th May 2019, 10:02
  #21 (permalink)  
 
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KK,
PR is not helpful now. Get the issue sorted out first. This is not about the packaging but about the content. The early spin doctoring backfired massively and upset many customers. is not helpful now. Get the issue sorted out first. This is not about the packaging but about the content. The early spin doctoring backfired massively and upset many customers.”


‘… making superficial or cosmetic changes is a futile attempt to disguise the true nature of a product or person.’

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lipstick_on_a_pig






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Old 26th May 2019, 11:24
  #22 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Dee Vee View Post
That's a typical type response from Boeing.

Declare its not helpful to discuss the problem now and try and shut down any current discussion/bad press.
When there is a fix, declare the problem is now fixed, so there's nothing to discuss now and lets just move on. So try and shut down any discussion after the fact too.
LOL. My point was that Boeing must solve the problem instead of starting PR campaigns. I did not claim anything is fixed and I did not try to shut down any discussion.
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Old 26th May 2019, 11:27
  #23 (permalink)  
 
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Only a small fraction of the passengers know what model airplane they are flying on.

Anecdotally - I agree with OldnGrounded here. Internet-famous is not the old famous. The Max has gone viral, and understandably: much of today's traveling public doesn't even remember when so many aircraft were grounded. (When the 787 had its battery problem there were only 50 aircraft in service worldwide, and of course the incidents were non-fatal.)

And in the days of steam media, Linotypes and dead trees, stories had a definite half-life. Even the DC-10 had a brief flutter of notoriety but then dropped out of the news. Nobody bought many more of them, in any event, but the same went for the L-1011.

Boeing has more digging-out to do than it knows about. Pointing fingers at the pilots - in any way, from the FTFA-fundies unleashed on online fora to talking about "a chain of events" - is hugely counterproductive, because then you're casting doubt not just on the Max, but the process that trains and certifies every pilot in the industry.

One way or another, it's hard to argue that Boeing's response to Lion Air was unaffected by complacency or denial; Ethiopian was clear evidence that it was inadequate.
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Old 26th May 2019, 14:57
  #24 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by LowObservable View Post
Pointing fingers at the pilots - in any way . . . is hugely counterproductive, because then you're casting doubt not just on the Max, but the process that trains and certifies every pilot in the industry.
Yes, absolutely. A truly terrible approach.

USA Today, yesterday: On autopilot: 'Pilots are losing their basic flying skills,' some fear after Boeing 737 Max crashes

If there is a problem with lack of hand-flying skills and experience, and there may well be, it clearly must be addressed. OTOH, focusing on the crew in cases like the MAX crashes, where the vast majority of knowledgeable observers agree that the root causes were a hardware failure and a system design flaw, undermines confidence in the industry as a whole for no useful purpose.
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Old 26th May 2019, 15:09
  #25 (permalink)  
 
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MAX Redesign:

Install taller Main Landing Gears and position the MLG trunnions further outboard in the wing compared to present location. For example, a B757 MLG redesign with a two wheel assembly, instead of a four wheel bogie should solve the issue, fitting the wheels nicely into the unchanged fuselage wheel wells.
Reposition the LEAP engines to the correct location with a pylon redesign to restore aerodynamic stability, comparable to the earlier B737 generations.
Remove MCAS software all together.
Then for PR reasons, if so desired, change MAX into MIX . . . . .
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Old 26th May 2019, 17:42
  #26 (permalink)  
 
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Sometimes the job of a PR firm is not to create or massage the message, but to advise and correct the messengers. A form of psychological counseling for the client's attitude or corporate culture (in this case, Boeing), not for the attitudes of the audience. In effect, CRM training for the corporate cockpit - and beyond.

A few examples of strategic PR advice for a "trust" issue:
- Don't be defensive. Don't see any question or adverse comment from the outside as an attack to be deflected or a justification for anger. Take it as an opportunity to engage with the outsider and develop a mutual and non-adversarial understanding.
- Go into meetings with stakeholders (regulators, legislators, airline customers, the flying public) with a question - "What do we need to do and say to make this right and restore your trust?" Don't tell them what you've decided to do - find out what you need to do. And don't bitch about the cost or other problems their answer may imply - save that for internal deliberations. One of the things a PR firm can do for you is ask such questions of "derived customers" - i.e., the flying public, who don't buy your product directly, and whom you will rarely meet face-to-face yourself (although there is a time and place for that) - but can have a strong influence on your success and survival.
- Compartmentalize: Don't let the stresses of your responsibilities to one stakeholder "put your back up" or spill over when dealing with another stakeholder. Your problems are not the stakeholders problem - you're the one paid to manage things. Kick over the trashcan in your private office, if you need to let off stress.

In short, convert the old saw of "Always be sincere, whether you mean it or not," to "Always be sincere, whether you mean it or not!" And back it up with attitude as well as actions.

Back in the 1950s, the local New York VW dealers decided to hire a joint ad agency. At their first meeting with the fledgling Doyle Dane Bernbach, one of the agency guys said "You know, your problem isn't the size or the power or the odd shape of the VW - it's that you're trying to sell a Nazi car in a Jewish town!" Comfort with the car was as important as comfort inside the car. Similarly, when brainstorming ads for Panasonic as it entered the US market, one "creative" jump up and said, "I can see the headline now! 'From the People who brought you Pearl Harbor....! ' "

In both cases, the understanding of the comfort-problem defined the strategy - not a bunch of engineering mumbo-jumbo and corporate-speak, but the development of trust through humor and personality. Along with good engineering to maintain that trust.
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Old 26th May 2019, 21:33
  #27 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by pattern_is_full View Post
Sometimes the job of a PR firm is not to create or massage the message, but to advise and correct the messengers. A form of psychological counseling for the client's attitude or corporate culture (in this case, Boeing), not for the attitudes of the audience. In effect, CRM training for the corporate cockpit - and beyond.

A few examples of strategic PR advice for a "trust" issue:
- Don't be defensive. Don't see any question or adverse comment from the outside as an attack to be deflected or a justification for anger. Take it as an opportunity to engage with the outsider and develop a mutual and non-adversarial understanding.
- Go into meetings with stakeholders (regulators, legislators, airline customers, the flying public) with a question - "What do we need to do and say to make this right and restore your trust?" Don't tell them what you've decided to do - find out what you need to do. And don't bitch about the cost or other problems their answer may imply - save that for internal deliberations. One of the things a PR firm can do for you is ask such questions of "derived customers" - i.e., the flying public, who don't buy your product directly, and whom you will rarely meet face-to-face yourself (although there is a time and place for that) - but can have a strong influence on your success and survival.
- Compartmentalize: Don't let the stresses of your responsibilities to one stakeholder "put your back up" or spill over when dealing with another stakeholder. Your problems are not the stakeholders problem - you're the one paid to manage things. Kick over the trashcan in your private office, if you need to let off stress.

In short, convert the old saw of "Always be sincere, whether you mean it or not," to "Always be sincere, whether you mean it or not!" And back it up with attitude as well as actions.

Back in the 1950s, the local New York VW dealers decided to hire a joint ad agency. At their first meeting with the fledgling Doyle Dane Bernbach, one of the agency guys said "You know, your problem isn't the size or the power or the odd shape of the VW - it's that you're trying to sell a Nazi car in a Jewish town!" Comfort with the car was as important as comfort inside the car. Similarly, when brainstorming ads for Panasonic as it entered the US market, one "creative" jump up and said, "I can see the headline now! 'From the People who brought you Pearl Harbor....! ' "

In both cases, the understanding of the comfort-problem defined the strategy - not a bunch of engineering mumbo-jumbo and corporate-speak, but the development of trust through humor and personality. Along with good engineering to maintain that trust.
You cannot fake sincerity.-Anon
Boy they try.
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Old 26th May 2019, 22:38
  #28 (permalink)  
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Green-dot
Install taller Main Landing Gears and position the MLG trunnions further outboard in the wing compared to present location. For example, a B757 MLG redesign with a two wheel assembly, instead of a four wheel bogie should solve the issue, fitting the wheels nicely into the unchanged fuselage wheel wells.
Reposition the LEAP engines to the correct location with a pylon redesign to restore aerodynamic stability, comparable to the earlier B737 generations.
Remove MCAS software all together.
Then for PR reasons, if so desired, change MAX into MIX . . . . .
Well, just the first bit would have cost a reported $Bazillion* to redesign the centre fuselage/wheel bay. My guess is, that's why they didn't do it.
Reposition the LEAP engines? Hmmm, very powerful engines and now with the original leverage arm giving a greater nose up pitch upon application of high power. Perhaps some software could be written that . . .


*Thinking about the figure. The R&N post told of a very high figure which I now tend to disbelieve. But there's no doubt it would have been a serious chunk of change. Very small change in hindsight.

Last edited by Loose rivets; 26th May 2019 at 22:50.
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Old 26th May 2019, 23:18
  #29 (permalink)  
 
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So the main ďcasualtyĒ is public opinion?

Maybe they should hire system safety engineering consultants instead, let some program managers go, and minimize the priority in the business plans for schedule, and maximize engineering excellence.

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Old 27th May 2019, 02:14
  #30 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by OldnGrounded View Post
Not sure about that. In our world of ubiquitous, instant communications and amplification by social media, many more pax seem to be paying attention to equipment type than was once the case. And it would be very hard for them not to be exposed to news about the MAX.
I flew from LAX to Albuquerque and back this week on an 800 and a 700. Both flights full. I didn't see anyone but myself pull out the safety card and most talked through the briefings. Had they been MAX's, I doubt most would have noticed, but I could be wrong.
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Old 27th May 2019, 02:21
  #31 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by yellowtriumph View Post
Personally I'm happy that if the pertinent authorities say its (sic) safe to fly the plane again I wouldn't hesitate to get on it and I would think that's the case with most people - generally we trust the 'experts'.
But those same "pertinent authorities" said it was safe to fly the first time. 🤔
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Old 27th May 2019, 02:54
  #32 (permalink)  
 
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If I was the PR agency asked to help Boeing out in this situation, the advice I would give would include:
  • Make some very public sacrifices, and I don't mean at the 'program manager' level, I mean right at the top of BCA - possibly the whole BCA executive team. That might be enough to save the Boeing Corp CEO & board
  • Ignore your lawyers' advice, admit liability and offer each victim's family enough money to make them not take Boeing to court. Openly cancel the share repurchase scheme to pay for it.
  • Walk away from the MAX, it is irretrievably tarnished. Resume NG production.
  • Make a big splash of starting the NSA program, and expedite it.
Boeing wouldn't take my advice, and probably wouldn't pay my bill either.
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Old 27th May 2019, 03:54
  #33 (permalink)  
 
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It is beginning to bit a bit harder now, the news is carrying stories of stranded passengers because of MAX cancellations.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/business/sun...mily-1.5146793

The Juanima family's three-week vacation ended on a sour note. The ten family members spent their final days in a Toronto hotel, stressing over how they'd return home to Vancouver after Sunwing cancelled their flight — four days before departure and with no explanation.
Juanima said Sunwing offered the 10 family members two options: A refund for their tickets which had been booked in January, or they could wait nine days in Toronto — at the family's expense — for the next Sunwing flight to Vancouver.

The family needed to return to their jobs or school, but they weren't prepared to pay the estimated $5,000 total it would cost them — on top of their refund — to purchase last-minute flights on another airline.

Sunwing apologized for the family's inconvenience and said the flight was cancelled due to it extending the grounding of its four Boeing 737 Max jetliners.
Of course, to put it in perspective there are over 300 other pax and crew who are never going to make it home, but it does seem like a rather raw way to deal with customers.
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Old 27th May 2019, 08:46
  #34 (permalink)  
 
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Call it the 737 MACS.
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Old 27th May 2019, 09:02
  #35 (permalink)  
 
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I think it’s a bit premature for PR as in “get people happy to fly on the MAX”: it’s still grounded and the full accident reports haven’t come out yet. Anecdotal but everybody I meet that knows or finds out I’m a pilot makes it the first topic of conversation and this is from a large selection of people across a wide range of interests. The MAX is going to be famous for a lot more than 15 minutes.

Everyone even remotely connected with engineering I have come across are aghast at what appear to be simple, fundamental errors in the design and certification, leading to grave doubts about modern Boeings, full stop. That is going to take a bit more than PR to dispel...
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Old 27th May 2019, 15:00
  #36 (permalink)  
 
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I did indeed some consulting for companies where trust of customers have been shattered for some reasons. The rundown is rather simple (yet hard and unforgiving):
1. It must be said frankly that 80% of the focus must be to deliver a perfect product. Resolve any flaws and test test, test it until it is more than perfect.
2. Find out who are the opinion leaders (in this case there are two levels = a. airlines, b.PAX of airlines) for the public.
3. Show the opinion leaders what have been done, how good, effective and safe the product is now and get genuine trust of them.
4. Let the opinion leaders speak out on their behalf and check how it works with a. + b. public with surveys.
5. Now the product in question must go into real life and show reliability and class. Use opinion leaders again to speak about it.
6. Don't even try to use classic marketing and promotion if opinion leaders didn't "approve" your product as a worthwhile solution yet.

The problem is that opinion leaders who have real power to influence the public and they must be "your friends" before you face any crisis because if you try to befriend with them after the fact it may be quite a show stopper. Well, you want to work with real experts and pro's who are authorities, not prostitutes. You don't use any lies, your methods must be straight and honest. Old school, I would say.

This works in any industry or area, even in politics, believe or not (when I helped future mayors of cities, their biggest cognition was: "So I have to honestly find out what the public really need and want for better life and I have to deliver and let opinion leaders talk about it, don't I?").

I tell you it is hard work...
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Old 27th May 2019, 15:21
  #37 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by FullWings View Post
I think itís a bit premature for PR as in ďget people happy to fly on the MAXĒ: itís still grounded and the full accident reports havenít come out yet. Anecdotal but everybody I meet that knows or finds out Iím a pilot makes it the first topic of conversation and this is from a large selection of people across a wide range of interests. The MAX is going to be famous for a lot more than 15 minutes.

Everyone even remotely connected with engineering I have come across are aghast at what appear to be simple, fundamental errors in the design and certification, leading to grave doubts about modern Boeings, full stop. That is going to take a bit more than PR to dispel...
This. Also, the flying public is a lot more aware and interested these days; more than Boeing and some PR folks might think.
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Old 27th May 2019, 15:54
  #38 (permalink)  
 
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One possibility would be to replace all of the AoA sensors, preferably with a model that is improved somehow. (The vane is held in place with a set screw? Really???) It doesn't address the underlying problems but it would be a good talking point (PR). Improved software probably doesn't cut it in today's world, we all have too much experience with that.
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Old 27th May 2019, 18:12
  #39 (permalink)  
 
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Loose Rivets

Originally Posted by Loose rivets View Post


Well, just the first bit would have cost a reported $Bazillion* to redesign the centre fuselage/wheel bay. My guess is, that's why they didn't do it.
Reposition the LEAP engines? Hmmm, very powerful engines and now with the original leverage arm giving a greater nose up pitch upon application of high power. Perhaps some software could be written that . . .


*Thinking about the figure. The R&N post told of a very high figure which I now tend to disbelieve. But there's no doubt it would have been a serious chunk of change. Very small change in hindsight.
If you had read my post correctly very little or no center fuselage/wheel bay redesign would be needed. Wing yes: taller gear moved outward with 737 twin wheel assembly retracting into the current wheel bay and a pylon to bring the engine more aft and lower where it should be to make the aircraft aerodynamically stable (at higher AoA) without the need of a "band-aid" named MCAS.

Indeed a very small change in hindsight when compared to the present situation.
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Old 27th May 2019, 18:27
  #40 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Green-dot View Post
Indeed a very small change in hindsight when compared to the present situation.
No.

Originally Posted by Green-dot View Post
position the MLG trunnions further outboard in the wing compared to present location
Far from "a very small change", whatever you compare it to.
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