The best way to manage a crisis is to plan in advance when you have the wisdom and clarity of perspective. COVID-19 is forcing every organization to think through its crisis preparedness, and it’s not too late to create your plan. We have created a template to help speed the time between planning and readiness.
Before you dive into the tactics, pull out your company values and read them again. Your crisis plan should reflect these -- values become meaningless when an organization only lives them when times are good. Your values will inform everything from when to close your offices, to which expenses get cut first. Then consider your culture. If your values inform what you do, your culture informs how you do it. It’s even more critical at a time when everyone is virtual.
As you work through this plan, may I recommend a mantra? Be open, honest, calm and accessible. Your humanity has never been more important. You’re going to need to communicate more than you think. And authentic communication delivered in a calm tone can help any audience pull together and weather difficult times.
Following are the nine considerations that should factor into your crisis plan:
Communicate often. Be open, honest, calm, and accessible. And if you need other PR resources for COVID-19, check out our toolkit.
Since the early days working around her kitchen table, Beth has grown Inkhouse into one of the top independent PR agencies in the country. She’s been named a Top Woman in PR by PR News, a Top 25 Innovator by PRovoke, and an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year finalist. Beth designed Inkhouse’s signature Storytelling Workshop to mirror the literary hero’s journey and to unearth the emotional connections that bind an audience to a brand or idea. She also uses narratives to build Inkhouse’s culture, most recently through two books of employee essays, “Hindsight 2020” and “Aren’t We Lucky?”