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Strategic Communications

Clear, memorable messages expand the art of the possible:

Define your playing field.

Scale your brand.

Manage through reputational storms.

About Jon F. Harmon

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Deeply experienced and trusted advisor

  • Serving corporate and nonprofit leaders with strategic counsel while mentoring their communications teams to drive the success of the enterprise in challenging or rapid-growth environments. 


  • Building brand, protecting reputation through proactive media relations and consistent internal engagement. Exceptional crisis management skills. Financial, legal and technology issue expertise.  


  • Leveraging skills, experience and judgment gained from senior roles at three global corporations with well-established brands, Jon has consulted for leaders in a variety of industries, including automotive, clean tech, financial services, professional services, health care and not-for-profit for reputation management and brand building.

Corporate Executive Experience:

Ford Motor Company: Learned the art and science of media relations and strategic communications in increasingly responsible management roles over more than 20 years with the global automaker:


  • Senior assignments included leading large teams responsible for complex global corporate issues affecting the company's reputation; new vehicle media introductions and other product communications in direct support of Marketing and Sales; as well as corporate social responsibility / sustainability initiatives and stakeholder engagement. 
  • As head of Ford Truck Communications, led crisis media relations and internal communications clearances during the protracted, high-profile Ford-Firestone crisis. Later authored a critically acclaimed business book with key learnings about crisis management in the Internet Age:  Feeding Frenzy–Inside the Ford-Firestone Tire Crisis.  (“Must reading for CEOs and public relations professionals…” – Harold Burson, founding chairman, Burson-Marsteller). 
  • Earlier roles included management of the corporate news bureau; media relations for financial, legal and labor issues; design and technology promotion; executive speech writing, and production of employee and dealer publications.  


Navistar International: As VP-Communications at the global commercial truck and engine manufacturer, 


  • Led effort to regain trust inside and outside the company following a financial-reporting crisis and delisting from NYSE. Regained confidence of employees and stakeholders with proactive, forward-looking messages stressing growth and diversification. 
  • Recreated robust internal communications that had gone “dark” during financial uncertainty. 

  

Heidrick & Struggles: As VP-Communications at the global executive search and leadership advisory firm,


  • Drove enhanced brand consideration globally through earned media placements, contributing to firm’s 55% revenue increase in five years.  
  • Led transformation communications, including re-imagined internal engagement, roll-out of the CEO’s “Heidrick Rising” strategy to employees in 51 offices in 30 countries, proactive media relations and distinctive thought leadership to support rebranding and protect external reputation.  
  • Led firm’s annual communications presence at World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, driving Tier One media engagement.

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