The Tactical Ingenuity Pyramid Thinker's Manual (includes a Tactical Ingenuity Pyramid)

9781883291358: The Tactical Ingenuity Pyramid Thinker's Manual (includes a Tactical Ingenuity Pyramid)
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The Tactical Ingenuity Pyramid © (TIP) is a strategic THINKING TOOL developed to help managers and their communications advisors creatively anticipate, identify, analyze, interpret, control, and counteract the unplanned visibility caused by emergencies and vulnerabilities in their businesses. The pyramidal shape itself has a purpose -- to graphically and in three dimensions illustrate the strategic options needed for managing problems. The idea is based on an important assumption: that experienced communications practitioners and managers can use the Pyramid to draw out their intuitive skills.

When assembled, the Pyramid serves as a focusing object designed to trigger intuitive approaches stimulated by the random associations made in connection with the organization of the descriptive terms found on its various parts.

The Pyramid’s lower portion is divided into those four basic, two-dimensional elements every emergency situation seems to have. These are: Expectations (of those involved and those afflicted as well as by-standers), Causes (in and out of the organization), Environment (in which the crisis or emergency is occurring), and Players (those individuals and organizations who participate or are affected by the emergency or situation). The upper part of the Pyramid represents four strategic approaches to managing emergencies and problem situations: Pre-empt (acting ahead of events), Control (managing the current situation), Contain (moving with events), and Counteract (acting after events have occurred).


Every organization faces potential emergency and crisis situations. Those in charge need competent and quick advice and useful options drawn from existing knowledge and past experience to quickly develop the proper ingredients for decision making. Those ingredients factored into a useful framework for taking action create an ability to manage emergencies and bad news in ways that minimize their negative impact on public and internal audiences. The framework for decision making is simple and straightforward:

* An appropriate description of what is actually happening.
* A reasoned interpretation of the scope and impact the emergency is having, will have, and can have; the patterns of audience behavior from past similar circumstances; plus the probable trend of events.
* At least three options, including doing nothing, in terms of tactics and strategies from which management can select its course of action.
* Specific recommendations.
* Contingencies and negative unintended consequences that may cause additional vulnerabilities.

Where do solutions come from when everything seems to be coming apart?

Adrenaline-generating, career-threatening, urgent situations create an atmosphere in which a special kind of critical management focus emerges along with organizational resolve to meet the emergency and overcome it. The role of public communications is often critical in diminishing the length of time the organization is subjected to the effects of the emergency; in helping management focus on key goals and objectives during the critical early minutes and hours; in minimizing the aftereffects of the organization’s handling of the problem in terms of perceptions among key audiences; and in the long-term management of the problem.

The inexperienced communicator’s thinking is often limited to disclosure, news releases, press kits and news conferences. Technically these may be important, but there are always larger considerations, bigger issues, and consequences that surprise us.

The concept of tactical ingenuity and the Tactical Ingenuity Pyramid © are meant to foster a state of mind opened to a broader range of options and tactics. They are designed to help users recognize the behavior patterns of key audiences, players, and outside forces, and to address key issues and problems quickly, thereby reducing the enormous pressu

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About the Author:

James E. Lukaszewski (loo ka SHEV skee) advises, coaches, and counsels the men and women who run very large corporations and organizations. He is an expert in managing and counteracting tough, touchy, sensitive corporate communications issues. The fastest growing portion of his practice involves civil and criminal litigation.

His clients will tell you that he is a pragmatist and straight shooter. He is a teacher, thinker, and friend with the unique ability to help executives look at problems from a variety of principled perspectives. He teaches clients how to think through and strategize in new ways and to take appropriate, highly focused, ethically appropriate action. He is one of the few who can and truly does coach CEOs.

He is a prolific author (several books, hundreds of articles), lecturer (corporate, college and university), coach, and counselor. He is quoted in publications such as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Miami Herald, the Harvard Business Review, and industry trade journals. He is a columnist, advisor, or editor for almost every major public relations periodical. His 1992 book, Influencing Public Attitudes: Strategies that Reduce the Media's Power, remains a classic work in the field of direct communication. The Public Relations Society of America released fully revised editions of his Executive ActionÒ Crisis Communication Management System in September 2000. He has published 25 unabridged monographs on critical communication subjects since 1994.

He is an internationally recognized speaker on crisis management, ethics, media relations, public affairs, and reputation preservation and restoration. Visiting his Web site, is like attending the University of Crisis Management.

An accredited member of the International Association of Business Communicators (ABC) and the Public Relations Society of America (APR), Mr. Lukaszewski is a member of the PRSA’s College of Fellows (Fellow PRSA); Board of Ethics & Professional Standards. He served as a crisis communications advisor to the International Disaster Advisory Committee, Agency for International Development, Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance from 1989 to 1992, and is a civilian advisor to several other federal agencies. He lectures annually at the U.S. Marine Corp's East Coast Commander's Media Training Symposium and was the second recipient of its Drew Middleton Award. He is an adjunct associate professor of management and communications in the Marketing & Management Institute of New York University's School of Continuing and Professional Studies, and a guest lecturer at Columbia University. He is the recipient of both Ball State University’s 2004 National Public Relations Achievement! Award and the 2004 Patrick Jackson Award for Distinguished Service to PRSA.

His biography is listed in the Marquis 55th Millennium, 56th, 57th, 58th, and 59th Editions of Who’s Who in America. His name also appeared in Corporate Legal Times as one of "28 Experts to Call When All Hell Breaks Loose," and in PR Week as one of 22 "crunch-time counselors who should be on the speed dial in a crisis."


"""Another one of Lukaszewski's imaginative tools to broaden our power to think."""

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