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Malcolm Cole
Director - Media and Communications

Those who are football fans – of any code – will no doubt have heard commentators say at some stage that one team will be looking forward to the half time break.

It can be a chance to step out of the maelstrom and enjoy a few moments’ peace. A chance for a reset.

This can also be true when managing negative media or public commentary about your organisation.  A weekend can often provide a welcome reset to the media agenda.  A long weekend is even better. 

And – aside from the Christmas break when almost everything stops from a public affairs point of view – the double long weekend of Easter is the most ideal opportunity.  Many people go away, and those who stay home still largely switch off from the news cycle.

This makes it a perfect time for an organisation to reset its narrative.

There’s no doubt that there will be plenty of people looking forward to a brief cessation in hostilities in Canberra.  Or at least reduced intensity around the issues of gender and bad behaviour (by a small number) that have troubled the Morrison Government.

Like the football team that’s out on its feet, they will no doubt cherish the break.

But the most important thing about resetting your narrative is not only taking an opportunity such as the extra-long weekend to close down discussion, but also having a clear and positive agenda when you restart on the other side of your break.

Expect to see a flurry of activity from Canberra at the start of next week, as new Ministers come to grips with their portfolios and the Government looks for every opportunity to talk about its new Ministerial lineup and agenda.

Of course, the problems of the past don’t simply disappear when you use a chronical event to create the perception of distance.

But in any news event – good or bad – the circus will eventually move on as people lose interest.  The key is to send them packing as quickly as you can from bad news, and find some clear air for your good news.  And that’s where a long weekend agenda reset can help.

The SAS Group is one of Australia’s leading issues management consultants.  Contact us for advice on how we can help you.

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