2 Workers dead, does SMRT care?

Recently, 2 workers died in an incident whilst at work on SMRT train tracks. While much discussion has been made regarding SMRT’s current safety measures, I am appalled by what I see in the following screenshot:

IMG_2016-03-23 18:00:31

It can be noted that this response on social media (Facebook) is considered within the realm of crisis communication, and what our minister has done is basically the technique of diminishing the severity of the incident, by diverting attention to good news, before offering his condolences. This, inevitably, led to responses such as this:

IMG_2016-03-23 18:00:36

In retrospect, it can be seen that leaders of many corporations (e.g. Shell) attempt to downplay the severity of an incident, but it always backfires. A more sincere, and possibly effective method would be to take up full responsibility instead. Although it may result in immediate losses (of reputation), but this is minimised, and the organisation will be also commended for taking up full responsibility and providing compensation.


What are your thoughts?

One response to “2 Workers dead, does SMRT care?”

  1. Hi De Zhong,

    Thanks for Sharing. Indeed, it is infuriating to see such a post from the Transport Minister when something devastating happened and I believe we are not the only ones who feel so. As of today (25th March 2016, 1am), the post has garnered more than 2000 angry reactions out of the 2400 reactions (likes, angry, love, haha, wow, sad) on the posts.

    The fact that the Transport minister, who in spite of the tragedy at hand, decided to share the milestones achievements first really makes us question his sincerity in addressing the issue. Moreover, many commentators claimed that some of their earlier comments on the post had been censored or deleted.

    This is really a reminder for all of us that social media has to be used with caution, especially when dealing with sensitive issues such as death. Even more so when you are a person with power and status. I believe that in times of crisis, such as this incident, the best way to address the public will be to step forward, acknowledge the problem and keep the public informed and up to date of your progress with the issue. And most of the time, social media may just be the best way to keep the public updated. We just have to be aware to use it cautiously and sensitively. I would disagree that taking full responsibility may lead to a loss of reputation, because I believe that an organization that acknowledges the problem, takes on the responsibility and tries their best to solve the problem is an organization that is worthy of respect (of course doing all these in an appropriate and sensitive manner).

    With regards,
    Tan Li Ling, Cari (G1)


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