Japanese companies are reportedly calling in PR pros specializing in crisis management, according to a story in The Wall Street Journal. Some Japanese corporate heads are looking to learn more about crisis communications, a relatively new idea in Japan, in reaction to the criticism Toyota has faced following its massive recall at the start of the year.
Executives from Weber Shandwick and Fleishman Hillard in Tokyo have reportedly been meeting the heads of Japanese companies to discuss how to avoid a similar backlash in the future.
"This is not just a Toyota issue but a corporate Japan issue," says Shin Tanaka, the president of Fleishman Hillard Japan. Despite their huge presence overseas, most Japanese companies still operate within a tight vertical structure, meaning that decisions are made top-down from the home country, and a flow of information doesn't necessarily reach divisions in different departments.