Crisis Management: 5 Dos and Don’ts
Crises are hard, you can’t necessarily predict their exact date for your planner. However, what you can do is prepare for how your organization will handle them. When planning for a crisis, here are 5 dos and don’ts to follow:
Don’t make promises you can’t keep. Often, after a crisis, your audience/the media may want exact answers of when things will go back to normal and how your organization plans to fix it. If you aren’t sure of an exact fact, then don’t promise it. Let the audience know that you’re doing your best to fix a crisis, but don’t let them think something is going to happen if you’re not sure of it.
Do respond. Whether the crisis is your company’s fault or not, the worst thing you can do is shy away and ignore the problem. If you do this, expect the problem to build up resulting in an angry reaction. Respond with the information you have and the plans you’re prepared to take.
Repeat your main message. Depending on what the crisis is, let it known that your organization has a purpose. If it involves safety, when addressing your public let them know that your main focus is the safety of your client.
Have a main spokesperson. Who is a trustworthy person of your organization, who will deal with unexpected questions confidently? Identify this person, and have them speak to your public when a crisis -- or any issue from there on -- arises. This creates a trust and familiarity between your public and your organization.
Evaluate. What went well? What needs to be changed? No one can plan a crisis, but you can learn from it. Adjust the areas that suffered throughout the crisis, or expand the areas that were successful.