In today’s globally connected and digital world, every company will experience a crisis at some stage of its development. Corporate crises raise many legal issues – from managing potential liabilities to deciding what can be disclosed to the media. Those issues, among others, were the topic of a webinar titled “Managing a global crisis – lessons learned from global mass claims”, held on 26 May.

The event was organised by Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer – one of the leading global law firms, the Polish Corporate Lawyers Association (PSPP) – the only association representing the interests of in-house lawyers on the Polish market, and WKB Wierciński, Kwieciński, Baehr.

The speakers from Freshfields – dr Hans-Patrick Schroeder (Partner) and Eric Leikin (Principal Associate) – presented the global trends in crisis management and shared practical recommendations on how to deal with a crisis, based on their experience in working on the Dieselgate matter. The participants could learn how to effectively deal with authorities, manage the entirety of a project and communicate more effectively, among other things. The issues presented served as the basis for a Q&A session and discussion held at the end of the webinar, which was moderated by Waldemar Koper (President of the PSPP, General Counsel at Kompania Piwowarska SA) and Aleksander Stawicki (Partner at WKB). The participants wanted to find out what are the most challenging aspects of assisting a company experiencing a global crisis from the perspective of external counsel and how to organise a company’s internal operations in case of such situations.

The main conclusions of the discussion were that the ability to control a crisis in its early stages helps avoid reputational and financial losses and that preparing a strategy early is crucial for the positive outcome of a project as a whole.