How we communicate will be central to our survival
While we will undoubtedly come out of the other side of the Coronavirus crisis, there will be many challenges in the weeks and months ahead. The way we communicate as a business will be central to our survival. As business leaders, it is our responsibility to protect our organisations’ reputations and judge when a statement, press release or social media post is timely and appropriate. Managing our messages decisively and calmly has never been more vital.
Here are our top tips culled from more than 30 successful years of managing clients’ crises:
Identify the threat ASAP
Identifying a threat to your business as early as possible is one of the key steps to a well-managed outcome and the better you can ultimately protect your business from any untoward consequences.
Plan your strategy
It’s vitally important to put together a plan of action and work through various scenarios. Consider every eventuality. Every move you make will have a consequence and potential repercussion.
Never lose sight of the fact that the overall objective is the successful continuity of your business. A holding statement can buy you invaluable time.
Identify your spokesperson
You may want to consider appointing an official spokesperson for any media interviews, together with a consistent point of contact for queries should they escalate. These spokespeople should be thoroughly prepared and well-rehearsed.
Review and re-assess
Once you’ve considered all the above, step back and reconsider. Try and think critically about any areas for improvement and make sure everything is in place. You will almost certainly need approval from others so make sure you know who they are and give yourself enough time.
Implementing the plan
Delivering the plan effectively is crucial. Work in bite-sized chunks. Be flexible. In a complicated crisis, unpredictability is the only certainty. When you’re dealing with the media deliver what you promise. While they will be seeking the facts, treated with courtesy and respect journalists can be very helpful.
Monitor the coverage and reaction
Tracking and assessing coverage in the traditional media, on social media platforms and customers’ and stakeholders’ reactions is vital to the process. Reaction will give you an essential steer as to your next steps. At the appropriate time have a thorough wash-up meeting – there are always lessons to learn.
As COVID -19 continues to dominate our world, there is little doubt that we are moving through unchartered waters. Nevertheless, there are some measures you can take to ensure your business reacts with compassion and assurance.
If you feel you would benefit from an initial complimentary conversation with no obligation, then please visit our dedicated web page or call Lee personally on 07887 535002.