Communication is key and the more you prepare in advance, the more effective you will be.
There are 5 key steps for communicating at the time of a crisis:
1) Ensure that any information and communication comes from the top of the organisation or you. To reassure people you need to demonstrate that you are present, in control and you have a plan to minimise any disruption.
2) Make sure you have a plan in place that is simple, clear and flexible, identifying any possible scenarios and anticipating any response, action and communication required.
3) Take action – be proactive and prepare as much as possible for potential situations.
4) Early and continuous communicating with all the key individuals, groups and organisations that have an interest in your organisation and the situation. (Download our Free Stakeholder Mapping Tool)
5) People come first. Always address the needs of those most affected by the incident first.
Did you know? 80% of effective crisis management is in the planning rather than the actual response.
What does this mean for your small business?
What can you do today to prepare as much as possible?
Your team or staff.
Don’t forget that how well you manage the situation can also be seen as an opportunity to grow and enhance your reputation if you can:
Other things to think about:
Effective communication isn't rocket science.
By taking the time to prepare properly, to think about possible risks and scenarios and to identify your key stakeholders (key individuals, groups or organisations who have an interest in your business), you will be able to manage the incident or crisis more effectively and therefore minimise the impact on your own organisation. Remember there are no right or wrong answers or solutions to managing a crisis, however careful preparation, planning and communicating in the right way to the right people will help you to keep control and minimise disruption.