Anthem’s Apology Hits all Three C’s of Credibility

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    A rare corporate apology done right: Anthem’s Apology

    The Anthem hack, which exposed the personal information of as many as 80 million customers, put the healthcare provider in an ugly situation. Not only were its own computer security team’s credentials stolen and used to access private information, but it was revealed that the data was not encrypted. This left customers more than a little upset, but by showing its understanding of their feelings Anthem in its apologetic email the organization took a big step in the direction of successful crisis management.

    Anthem apology letter

    We constantly catch companies forgetting one or another of our Three C’s of Credibility – confidence, competence, and compassion – in their apologies, but Anthem nailed all three. While this letter is but a small part of the crisis management required for a breach of this size and sensitivity, it did its job by showing anxious and upset stakeholders that Anthem understands how they feel and is working to make things right again.

    For more resources, see the Free Management Library topic: Crisis Management

    [Jonathan Bernstein is president of Bernstein Crisis Management, Inc., an international crisis management consultancy, and author of Manager’s Guide to Crisis Management and Keeping the Wolves at Bay – Media Training. Erik Bernstein is Social Media Manager for the firm, and also the editor of its newsletter, Crisis Manager]

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