A technology company whose stock was being hammered by short sellers retained us to improve its quarterly shareholder earnings calls.
VS&A played a key role in this success by helping create vastly improved analysts’ packages that were praised by investors, upgrading the earnings call script process and scripts, and preparing executives for the question and answer period. In a thank you letter, the company CEO said, “the board was consistently pleased. There was literally never a question we could not answer.”
A year after our work began, the company was sold to a larger company at a premium price.
We were called in when a prestigious New York baker faced a crisis that could devastate the company’s business. Someone, believed to be a disgruntled employee, had placed a razor blade in one of their bread loaves and it was not discovered until the bread hit the store shelf. There was the potential for a serious injury to a customer and ruinous media coverage.
We coordinated with the company’s spokespeople in preparing a holding statement, coached executives on how to successfully handle the media interviews, and monitored the media for coverage of the story.
As a result, the company’s messages were accurately broadcast, the public had confidence that this was a one-time incident and not a recurring problem, and the company spokesperson, after watching one of the interviews, raved “it was like we chose which sentences and shots they should use!” The incident was over very quickly with no loss of sales or reputation.
For the past 30 years an operator of prestigious shopping centers across the U.S. has sent every potential spokesperson to us for media training, well over 300 people. The training has included preparation for handling hard news stories, creating and placing promotional features, and crisis response.
The company says the training has been invaluable in getting out each center’s quality message and in giving it a media coverage edge over competitors.
A large capital investment firm asked us to polish the skills of representatives who would be making multi-million-dollar sales presentations to pension fund executives.
We taught them how to make their PowerPoint presentations more appealing and effective, how to deliver their messages persuasively to small audiences in a conference room setting, and how to anticipate and smoothly respond to even the most questions they would face.
The company said the participants’ improved effectiveness resulted in a measureable increase in sales and job satisfaction.
A key to the success of any book is the author’s media interviews. Years of research and writing must often be boiled down to sound bites and anecdotes that will make people want to buy the book.
We’ve trained the authors of many big sellers on a wide variety of subjects. We show them how to be comfortable on camera, how to anticipate the interviewer’s questions, and how to handle even the most difficult and challenging lines of inquiry.
We found ourselves in a key consulting role when a long-time client, a small company, found itself confronted with a hostile takeover bid by the largest company in its industry.
We worked closely with the CEO and other top management in developing messages and fashioning a strategy to get support from shareholders, employees, and state and local officials in fending off the hostile bid.
Our client won and remains an independent company to this day.
A mid-sized New York City PR firm wanted to increase the presentation skills of its newest employees, as well as refresh the skills of more senior staff. They asked us to run a session at their annual retreat that would accomplish these goals.
VS&A staffers gave an overview of presentation skills, how to create a client presentation, ways to deliver key points successfully, and effective handling of Q&A. Volunteers from the firm were given practice VS&A presentations to deliver, then were critiqued by our trainers, allowing everyone in the group to learn from those examples.
The session got very positive feedback from both the participants and the head of the firm.