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This is the weekly Careers newsletter. If you’re reading this on the web or someone forwarded this e-mail newsletter to you, you can sign up for Globe Careers and all Globe newsletters here.

Déjà Leonard is a copywriter and freelance journalist based in Calgary.

The last year and a half has seen many companies face the public consequences of making what many would consider, the wrong call when it comes to their brand, stances on public issues and more.

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Companies have a lot of pressure on them – but what about the people behind the scenes?

Alan Kearns, managing partner and founder of Career Joy, a career and leadership coaching organization with offices across Canada, says the company has seen an increase in people who have concerns after being involved in their company’s PR crisis.

“At the end of the day, you have two brands you’re responsible for. One is the corporate brand you work for; but more importantly, your own brand,” Kearns says.

If you’ve found yourself involved in a blunder, Kearns says to be prepared to talk about it, especially when you’re job searching.

Reflect on any misunderstandings, the ramifications of the choices your organization made, your key learnings and how you recovered. What knowledge can you take away to bring value to another position or organization?

“Your involvement in a brand crisis isn’t necessarily the end of your career advancement, or the fast track you’re on,” Kearns says.

Brands themselves are grappling with the heightened demand from society to do the right thing, and if we’ve seen anything over the last few years, they aren’t always getting it right.

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Ultimately, “good employers and good leaders understand that we live in very unusual times,” Kearns says, noting that most employers should understand how complex these challenges are, and are unlikely to write someone off for their involvement.

He says as an individual employee, you can be proactive by focusing on agility and adaptability as we wade through the ever-changing waters of what’s expected from companies and their people.

“It’s one thing to be creative and intelligent and a strategist. But I think you have to look at resilience, adaptability, and creating strategies … that can in some way, anticipate more variances,” Kearns advises.

So, for example, if you’re working in marketing, are you creating campaigns that are anticipating the evolution of your category or our culture? Are crisis communications built into your strategy?

“As much as a crisis seems to be the crisis of the moment, they do go away. And, they may not stick as much as you think they would to you or to your organization, if you respond quickly,” Kearns says.

What I’m reading around the web

More opinion from Globe Careers

Five clues you’re in the wrong job What are the warning signs that you should jump ship and find another schooner to sail with? These five clues should help, writes columnist Merge Gupta-Sunderji.

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After more than a year of remote work, many practices established during the COVID-19 pandemic are here to stay Canadian businesses are busy planning their next steps as we emerge from lockdowns and restrictions right now, but I often wonder how far ahead they are really looking, questions Purolator CEO John Ferguson.

More from the section

How to approach your senior executives when they’re out of touch about diversity Imagine you’re a hospital administrator and you have added a new physician with a difficult-to-pronounce name: Adaeze Adebayo-Opeyemi. But she offers patients and you an easy solution. “Just call me Dr. Daisy!” she says cheerfully. Do you?

I think my employee is faking their sick days. What are my options? In this week’s NinetoFive advice column, a reader asks about a an employee who has given questionable reasons for taking time off five times in the past six months.

With a resume full of teaching experience, how can this educator pivot his skills to a job in finance? In Resume Review, a reader asks for advice on changing industries.


Leadership Lab is a series where executives, experts and writers share their views and advice about the world of work. You can find all Leadership Lab stories at tgam.ca/leadershiplab and guidelines for how to contribute to the column here.

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