BP’s Tony Hayward’s slick PR Skills

That sinking feeling - or not. Tony seems oblivious.

Firstly, apologies about the headline. That is the sort of genius that Tony would have dreamt up around about the same time that he thought a yacht race would be the perfect tonic to get ” [his] life back” and snaffle some much-needed R&R.

What planet is this man on? Hundreds of lives and livelihoods are at risk and already damaged by the BP crisis and what does he think is the perfect oasis of calm in the centre of this storm? Well, a hugely expensive sport enjoyed by the uber-rich in full glare of the cameras on pristine shimmering waters of course!

For those who have not followed the story of “Capt Clueless” quite as avidly as me, take a look at this superb run-down of Hayward’s greatest hits here on the BBC

Hayward's howlers


The White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel summed it up hilariously yesterday on ABC TV noting: “I think we can all conclude that Tony Hayward is not going to have a second career in PR consulting.”

The Press For Attention Prescription

There is no doubt that this will have been an awful and incredibly stressful time for Mr Hayward and senior BP figures personally but the problem is that he and BP keep reminding us of this as if we should all feel sorry for them. That is just not going to fly. Nobody cares about the BP Big Wigs’ feelings – they care about the total devastation caused and what can be done about it.

Intense pressure from the media can lead to errors, that is only human. However, the catalogue of errors just keeps growing as the perceived lack of empathy with the “small folk” (as they coined them earlier) from within the BP hierarchy becomes more and more apparent. Is it the case? Do they lack empathy? Well, it sure LOOKS like it and in PR, that is pretty much case closed. They need to work on showign that they understand and care about the crisis that they have created – and the real crisis is not PR, it is the spill.