Just a classy thing to do! Ironman is the first recipient of the RBR's class act of the day award...I tend to stay out of the daily news, however, how anyone in the media department, pr departments or management can sleep at night at BP amazes me.
Lessons to learn from the BP Crisis for our businesses? One must ALWAYS be prepared for the unexpected. Make sure that, in your pr department, you have someone who does not think in a linear fashion-someone who sees the glass as half full and half empty. Contrary thought is good for the soul.
And, in this world where we worship 17-25 year old consumers, having someone over 40, over 50, oh dear God, should I say it? Over 60, who has seen a few screw ups, is essential. We live in a world where there are no simple answers, and the enthusiasm of youth, and the experience of different age groups means the difference between success and huge failure.
Someday, when the BP fiasco is looked at forensically, there will be the acknowledgment that people involved were too close to see the whole picture, and that contrary voices were, perhaps, squashed.
Companies and organizations in our sport may not have a huge oil spill to contend with, but an issue with huge recall in product, a series of poor deliveries in bad weather, an event that goes bad, due to an act of God, and the bad publicity of the event or athlete whittles at the consumers' brand view, could always happen. Not that I follow it all of the time, but the method related to me, by crisis PR agencies (yes, there are a few good ones), is simple to say, terribly difficult to do: provide clear, timely info, admit when you do not have the answers, and try and keep things transparent.
We are living in an age that can be both exhilarating and terrifying, both at once. We are living in an age where we have, perhaps, too many choices. In the final analysis, mistakes are where we learn. Let's focus on making our own unique mistakes, and learning from the one's those before us have made...
Ironman Allocates $100,000 for Donation Toward Gulf Coast Oil Spill Relief
June 8, 2010 (Tampa, Fla.) - World Triathlon Corporation, owner of the global Ironman Triathlon Series, announces its contribution to the oil spill relief effort in the Gulf of Mexico. The Ironman Foundation, the company's charitable arm, has earmarked a total of $100,000 to support the efforts and its first donation of $25,000 will be made to Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans, an organization that has been instrumental in assisting those affected by the oil spill in the state of Louisiana. Ironman, headquartered off Florida's West coast, plans to offer additional assistance to related organizations in the coming weeks.
President and CEO of Ironman, Ben Fertic comments, "My family has been in Florida for six generations and I am devastated by the BP oil spill and the ongoing destruction it is causing not only to the environment, but also to the families whose livelihoods are dependent upon the Gulf of Mexico. As a company, we are always looking for unique ways to help preserve the natural resources in our host communities. We believe our contribution to Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans will offer direct support to the fishing and shrimping families in their time of need. We look forward to providing additional aid to clean-up efforts around the Gulf Coast and hope these types of donations will have a meaningful impact."
Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans is an umbrella agency with 45 programs delivering health and human services to the poor and vulnerable in the 8 civil parishes of the Archdiocese of New Orleans. Just days after the spill, Archbishop Gregory Aymond, Catholic Charities co-president Gordon Wadge, Second Harvest CEO Natalie Jayroe and a CCANO disaster response team, met with government leaders in Plaquemines and St. Bernard Parishes. By the first week of May, Catholic Charities was offering assistance in both St. Bernard and at two oil spill relief centers in Plaquemines Parish. In just a few short weeks, the number of Catholic Charities' centers around New Orleans now totals five. To date, the organization has provided emergency assistance to more than 2,300 families, served 952 food boxes, given more than $140,000 in gift cards/food vouchers and counseled more than 700 individuals.
"One-hundred percent of this donation from The Ironman Foundation will go directly to assistance for the fishermen. The fishermen of Southeast Louisiana are a strong, resilient and independent group who are accustomed to providing for themselves and their families. The threat of losing not only their livelihood, but also our culture and way of life has been a tremendous blow. We deeply appreciate the commitment from one strong group to another," said Gordon Wadge, co-president of Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans.
The Ironman Foundation has raised more than $3,500,000 through various initiatives, including a charitable eBay auction, since its inception in 2003. Throughout the last eight years, the Foundation has provided charitable assistance with donations and grants being received by a variety of local and worldwide organizations such as: The Pediatric Cancer Foundation, C Different, The American Cancer Society, American Diabetes Association, American Red Cross, American Heart Association, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Boy Scouts of America, among others.
For more information on Ironman and The Ironman Foundation, log on to www.ironman.com. To learn about Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans, please visit www.ccano.org. Media-related inquiries can be directed to Blair LaHaye at Blair@ironman.com or Jessica Weidensall at Jessica@ironman.com. Both parties may be reached at 813-868-5940.