A panel of crisis experts discussed ‘Managing Reputation Risk’ at the Wisconsin Institute of Certified Public Accountants Spring Conference March 16 at the Country Spring Hotel & Conference Center. Update: In his weekly columnMilwaukee Journal Sentinel Business Editor and panel moderator Steve Jagler shared reputation insights from Karl Robe, APR, of PR firm Karl James & Company. Insights were based on the panel discussion and also shared as part of the USA Today Network.

Panelists included Karl Robe, APR, of PR firm Karl James & Company, Thomas Hofbauer of Hofbauer Law and Daniel Schroeder of Organizational Development Consultants.

In attendance were professionals who sought information on the newest developments and latest updates about the market and economic outlook, ethics, cybersecurity, employment and benefit issues, management and technology. CPAs, CFOs, CEOs, controllers, managers and human resource and accounting staff were part of the audience.

Panel Topic: Managing Reputation Risk

Reputation is built on trust. Trust powers your ability to conduct business. When crisis hits—no matter how large or small—there’s one objective: Restore trust! Data shows reputational risk is at an all-time high. There’s increased opportunity and motive to scrutinize people and organizations. An ability to share information quickly to vast amounts of people. Coupled with the ability to remain anonymous online. This creates an environment where people, companies and governments now can inflict significant pain and create chaos.

Panelist Bios

Karl Robe, APR, founded Karl James & Company based on the belief that above all else, credibility moves people. For more than 20 years, he has coached and counseled executives from multi-national companies to start-ups in brand development, reputation and issues management, and leadership communications. As an author, presenter and coach, his insights have appeared in Wisconsin Lawyer, The Strategist, Crisis Manager, Wisconsin Law Journal and numerous other venues. Karl achieved an Accredited in Public Relations (APR), certifying a candidate’s knowledge of public relations practice, communications theory, management science and ethics.

Tom Hofbauer has over 25 years of experience defending catastrophic personal injury and property damage claims in over 18 states. He has been named a “Wisconsin Super Lawyer” by Law & Politics Media Inc. every year since 2006. Tom was recognized as a “Leader in the Law” for 2009 by the Wisconsin Law Journal and is a frequent lecturer and author on the handling and defense of complex claims. Tom serves as General Counsel and is a member of the Board of Directors of the Master Builders Association of Wisconsin, the oldest construction trade group in Wisconsin. He also serves on the Board of Directors for the Waukesha County Bar Association. After practicing in firms in Chicago and Waukesha County, Tom started Hofbauer Law in Delafield in early 2011.

Dr. Daniel A. Schroeder has consulted with more than 1,000 organizations over 20 years. He is a licensed psychologist in Wisconsin and a certified clinical trauma professional. He holds board certifications in organizational and business consulting psychology from the American Board of Professional Psychology and in psychology from the American Board of Psychological Specialties. In 2016, he was appointed to the Licensure Certification, and Credentialing Committee of the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology. The Better Business Bureau of Wisconsin Foundation, Inc. awarded him its Torchlight Award. He is President/CEO of Organization Development Consultants, Inc., a management consulting firm offering performance consulting solutions for individuals, teams and organizations.