Bindeez Toy Recall Example of Crisis Management

Can Bindeez recover from its product recall?

The award-winning children's toy has been recalled because it contains a chemical which turns into a dangerous party drug when metabolised in the body.

Bindeez are made in China and reported to contain hundreds of beads which can induce seizures, drowsiness or a coma if eaten.

It is a big blow for the company which has experienced great growth since winning the 2007 Australian Toy of the Year award at the Melbourne Toy and Hobby fair.

Media reports suggest the beads should contain a non-toxic glue but instead contain the chemical which the body metabolises into gamma-hydroxy butyrate (GHB), also known as fantasy or Grievous Bodily Harm.

All Bindeez products will be removed from sale and households with the toy were urged to get rid of it.

There are nine actions Bindeez should now do to minimize the risk to their reputation:

1. Commit and engage – accept responsibility, do not blame others, engage with stakeholders especially consumers.
2. Clear plan – work to deadlines, work out differences & get any ‘dirt’ or negative actions out in the open.
3. Calm - company leaders must show confidence, caring, and certainty in a time of uncertainty.
4. Currency & accuracy - key messages – focus on human life - show empathy to those affected, accurate facts & figures, what is the company doing to help, and what is the call to action for concerned parents.
5. Control the media – rehearse to stay on message, no speculation, no “off record”, no “ambush”.
6. Concise – release information, make it to the point and timely
7. Convene – set up a crisis team, a crisis centre, hold a press conference so the action is a “one to many” communication activity.
8. Connect – set up up to date distribution & lists and release information
9. Correct – evaluate, review & correct if necessary any misinformation

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