Crisis management planning may be on the back burner – possibly where you keep your priority about advertising. You may say, “I don’t need a crisis management plan, I’ll just deal with it if it comes.” Or maybe you would love to develop a plan but don’t know where to start. Well, I think I am able to provide you with that. To get started, let’s take a systematic view of planning.
Lukaszewski (1997) points out that the people most affected by the problem created by an organization will control the standards. The more severe the crisis, the more severe the standards required by victims, the public, the government and the media.
Lukaszewski (1997) poses, what does the company wish to accomplish with crisis communication? It is essential in response to a crisis, the company must act conclusively, responsively and quickly – dealing with the most effected first. The company must respond to customers, employees and the community’s expectations of effective communication. For example, when responding to a problem the company must open which builds credibility. It is crucial in a crisis that you show concern, as well as respect to those affected, along with communicating sensitivity and compassion.
Click on the websites below and get some additional perspective to the importance to crisis management planning.
A plan will serve your company, customers and employees well. The plan can be developed and put into action at minimum additional cost. The following crisis communications plan is a synthesis of steps from various sources.
- Permit selected representatives of your business to brainstorm potential crisis scenarios. Remsik (1999) says this ensures that all perspectives are covered.
- Select staff members to be in such positions as chairperson, media relations, community relations, government relations and operations/facilities representative.
- Your contingency plan must ensure service delivery and that the bottom line remains intact. Kristen Gilpatrick (1999) states, “The first principle of crisis management is the management team for day-to-day operations does not have to be the management team for the crisis. In fact, a big problem during crisis is everyone stops doing their job and works on the crisis, and then the business suffers.”
It is also wise to have your attorney counsel the team. Your attorney can also provide advice on possible liability issues about the plan. Remsick (1999) suggests that your spokesperson consult with your attorney to insure comments will not supply the media with information that could be used against your company in the future.
Final food for thought
Amme (1999) suggests your team develop a phone tree to spread out responsibility for contacting pertinent people. The addition of a crisis incident form for documenting how the crisis was initially handled could prove beneficial. Amme (1999) states that your team should concentrate on formulating three options and from there make a recommendation for dealing with each kind of crisis.
Amme, R. (1999), When a Crisis Strikes, Will You Know What To Do? [3 pages] Rick Amme and Associates. Available: http://www.electricpaving.com/amme/tip4.html
Anonymous. (2010 September), Expert Answers. [4 pages] Quality Progress. Available: http://proquest.umi.com
Bray, A. (2010 September), When Your Reputation’s on the Line. [2 pages] ABA Banking Journal. Available: http://proquest.umi.com
Gilpatrick, K. (1999 May), Y2K Crisis Response. [5 pages] Credit Union Management. Available: http://proquest.umi.com
Lukaszewski, J. (1997 Fall), Establishing Individual and Corporate Crisis Communication Standards. [13 pages] Public Relations Quarterly. Available: http://proquest.umi.com
O’Rourke, M. (2010 June), Tylenol’s Headache. [2 pages] Risk Management. Available: http://proquest.umi.com
Remsick, J. (1999 July), A Crisis Communication Plan – A Vital Element. [8 pages] Direct Marketing. Available: http://proquest.umi.com
White, E. (2010 June), Disaster Cleanup in Aisle 2. [2 pages] Risk Management. Available: http://proquest.umi.comTweet