Outwrite’s managing director Tracy North led two media training sessions at a national care industry conference.

The 13th annual Care Conference for Wales invited Tracy to run crisis communications and proactive public relations (PR) strategy sessions with delegates at its 2017 event.

The event, held at Cardiff City Football Club, explored the opportunities and challenges facing the care sector in Wales. Speakers covered topics including funding, regulation and safety.

Tracy delivered two consecutive workshops, covering what to do when a crisis happens and how to build relationships with media. She covered reasons to engage with media when a crisis breaks, tips about handling incoming inquiries from journalists, and advice about how to gather information ready for issue to the media.

She explained that brand reputations were best protected during a crisis when management has a communications plan already in place, so the company gets its side out before third parties speculate about what is happening.

In addition, Tracy talked about ways to carry out proactive and positive communications on an on-going basis, to give customers, the general public and other stakeholders have an understanding of what the organisation does before a crisis hits.

Tracy said: “The care conference was an excellent event and it was brilliant to present to people passionate about providing quality care.

Tracy said: “I explained that ‘no comment’ should rarely be an option, even when it’s in connection with an item you’d prefer never to see in the media.

“Damage to the company and brand reputation is best contained by speaking to reporters instead of ignoring them.

“Attendees also swapped notes about how they had handled different scenarios in their organisations. I think everyone went away with new ideas and more confidence about how to handle the media in a crisis.”

Tracy is a regular commentator in the media on business issues in Wales.

In 2017 so far, she has discussed the need for improvements to North Wales’ A55 on BBC Radio Wales, and been interviewed on ITV Wales about the effect of devolution on business.

She also writes a monthly guest column in the Daily Post’s business section.

She founded Outwrite in 1994, and has overseen the evolution of the firm into an award-winning digital agency.

Its clients include the Wales Air AmbulanceWynne Construction, Mold-based chemicals firm Synthite, and engineering, planning and environmental specialists Caulmert.