Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Crisis Communications

No organization - big, small, for-profit, not-for-profit, public, or private - is crisis-proof. Regardless of whether you believe it, there is a crisis in your future… perhaps tomorrow, possibly next week or next year, or perhaps not for several years... but it is lurking there. The only real uncertainty is whether you will be ready for it and can prevent it from becoming a full-scale disaster. This issue should help you prepare.

When an emergency occurs, the need to communicate is immediate; here is direction for developing a crisis communications plan. (Item #1) An emergency communications plan must be able to do these eight things. (Item #2) One key way to ensure superior business continuity is to have a clear, well designed plan in place for keeping communications going, not just when an event occurs, but during its duration. (Item #3)

The first step is to establish your crisis communications team and define their roles. (Item #4) Remember, where there is an information vacuum, staff will fill it -- even if they have to make stuff up. (Item #5) If you are new to the new rules of crisis communications, here is a cheat-sheet of sorts, in an attempt to keep the underprepared on the right path. (Item #6)

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