• Garth Callender

Kensington Palace 'crisis talks'

This Week – Royal crisis preparation, Opal tower effect and Vogue apology



Royal crisis preparation

Recent tabloid reporting has claimed that Kensington Palace has been holding ‘crisis talks’ over the potential divorce of Meghan and Harry. While this is likely just paparazzi gossip, it is an interesting insight into what may actually be the crisis management process and scenario forecasting used by the Royal Household.

  • When viewed as an organisation, the Royal Family is an institution that is no stranger to reputational damage. While there is an ongoing churn of tabloid stories being aired, the Royals have faced some serious crises that impacted their reputation.

  • The last 100 years have seen numerous high-profile crises to hit the Royals – from King Edward’s scandalous abdication to public dismay at the Queens’s delayed public response to Diana’s death. Royals are constantly besieged by the paparazzi and are regularly the target of speculation and sensationalism.

  • The latest speculations about feuds, flirting, car accidents and upcoming divorce is unlikely to un-seat the Royal Family. However, it is not inconceivable that a ’perfect storm’ of Royal crises could do irreparable damage to the Royal’s reputation and challenge their position as the head of the British people.

  • So, while ‘New Idea’ sources have told the magazine that ‘secret preparations are underway for how to manage the fallout’ of a Harry and Meghan split, it seems highly likely that the Royal Household has a crisis management capability to protect the Monarch and her extended family. It is probable that the reported ‘crisis talks’ are actually crisis scenario planning and response preparation – not unlike services offered by Trebuchet Pivot.

Experts criticise ACT building industry

Following the fall-out from the Opal Tower evacuation, industry experts have warned that the majority of high-rise apartment buildings in Canberra have major defects. They claim the situation has occurred due to a lack of regulation, government's reluctance to punish, consumer ignorance and extreme hot and cold weather.

  • Recently, the Trebuchet Pivot Weekly Update detailed the Christmas Eve evacuation of Opal Tower residents in Sydney’s Olympic Park. The saga continues with residents refusing to move back into the tower until they review the engineering report stating the building is safe.

  • The Opal Tower incident sparked calls for an independent inquiry into the approval process across the NSW industry, with experts saying "corners are being cut". Victoria's building watchdog has reported it will commence an investigation into all Melbourne projects built by Icon. It is likely that these expert warnings have gained greater exposure due to the Opal Tower incident.

  • This is an example of how a single incident can escalate to impact related areas within an industry, even though they may be geographically isolated.

Vogue apology – accused of treating marginalised as an afterthought

Vogue magazine has made an apology for misidentifying Muslim American journalist Noor Tagouri as Pakistani actress Noor Bukhari. . The issue came to light when the journalist posted a video of her reaction on social media with a statement claiming that misrepresentation and misidentification is a constant problem for Muslims in America.

  • Vogue appears to have avoided any real brand damage by offering a well-crafted online apology. The post, which has received over 100,000 likes, accepts responsibility, apologises to both Tagouri and Bukhari, and reinforces Tagouri’s statement that misidentification is a problem for minority groups in the US.

  • Tagouri also appears to have suffer no long term harm from the mistake. Rather, the widespread publicity over the magazine’s error has been a springboard for her to further highlight the issues she sees for minority groups in the US.

  • This incident is a good example of how the narrative can be controlled and damage minimised by a well-considered PR effort. Additionally, this example in particular, shows how incidents can quickly be turned to a positive event for those involved, in this case for the perceived victim.


Local, national and global events could impact upon your business at any time. Trebuchet Pivot provides your business with the skills and knowledge to work through crises when your business is at its most vulnerable.

Exceptional leadership and comprehensive crisis and incident planning is now not just a good idea, it is critical to the organisations’ people, operations, assets, reputation and ultimately the financial value.

Now more than ever Australian businesses must take crisis management seriously. Trebuchet Pivot provides the insights and experience needed to address potential threats faced by boards and executive teams as they lead their organisations into the next decade and beyond.

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