The first major issue with any crisis is actually realising you’re in one.
It’s so easy when you’re in the throes of yet another difficult situation at work to keep your head down and simply tackle the problems in question.
After all, that’s what we do as business owners don’t we? We come up with solutions to thorny issues and then move on; no point crying over spilt milk is there when there’s a bigger job to be done?
If you run your own business your natural instinct may be to move on and hope that that will be it in terms of big, difficult issues for this month. Let’s hope for easier problems next week or, better still, hope for some GOOD news for a change.
But deep down we know life’s not like that is it?
Someone, somewhere – maybe a trusted deputy or partner needs to be asking the question – probably at the most inconvenient time imaginable- ”What if this information was made public? What would our customers do? What would our shareholders/stakeholders say? How would we cope?”
The next question then needs to be, “What is our plan for if this actually does happen and the information goes public?”
You then need to come up with a plan that manages that potential crisis… let’s call it the pre-crisis.
Now you’re in the awareness zone which will hopefully put your company in a better position to deal with the nightmare scenario should it arise.
Are your internal comms systems in place? Do the senior members of your team know what their responsibilities are if the issue gets any bigger?
Then there are the external comms… news breaks on Twitter nowadays so who will sign off the public-facing messages on social and mainstream media?
Better still, make hay while the sun shines and let our team test your comms systems and put your team,if you have one, through its paces to ensure that they’re aware of their responsibilities and keeping you informed of key developments throughout the crisis.
We will create mock-news scenarios as near to a real-life news crisis as possible with people who have spent their working lives reporting on breaking news as it happens for the BBC, ITV and newspapers.
Having worked on the other side of the fence we know what the media want, what their audiences expect and most important how YOU can get the most out of the media by protecting your reputation and being pro-active in your dealings with the press.