by Duresa Sadrija | Guest Contributor | BUSINESS
A crisis in an organization has been a scary circumstance to many stakeholders in the market. This can happen to any business and company. Global giants have been hit by crises and stumbled down to nothing. As a leader in any organization, this is something to be ready for. You might not know how the dynamics work at any point. With the right info on marketing outsources, you get equipped with all the needed info on how to deal with crisis situations.
What is a crisis in an organization?
Organizations are faced with a dynamic environment now and then. This brings changes in the market structures, and other vital areas. These changes are becoming a norm everywhere. Everyone is making efforts to ensure they are not affected by these unavoidable circumstances. Adaptability is the key to bypassing any challenge facing the organization. The duties fall on the management team mostly. But it is the duty of all parties involved to make things right, to prevent the situation from worsening.
What is Crisis Management?
Crisis management is the ability to cope with the challenges facing the organization. Challenges are inevitable. However, the way you cope with the challenges is what matters. This is what is known as management. It entails strategies set up to combat and keep the organization running during and post-crisis. These strategies require all involved to be extravagant and come up with solutions in time-sensitive situations. No matter how quickly the decision is needed, it should be the best option to take. As a leader, you should know the difference between quick and rush decisions.
Here are some of the things that need to be followed by any organization to ensure they survive uncertain situations.
1. Prior Preparation
Crises are not a new term, mostly in this era. There are numerous changes in the industries around the world. This is mostly due to the constant advancement in technology, pandemics, and other political and business changes. As a leader, you must ensure you set up ways to reduce the effects of a crisis once it hits. Some organizations have made it a priority by setting up crisis management departments. These teams are composed of experts in the field of crisis management and prevention. This shields the organization from failing once hard times hit. Setting up ways to combat the crisis in advance saves you from all the sweating and risks of losing it all.
2. Conducting Research
A leader should be characterized by continuous education. Every day there is something new to learn about the field you are in. How is this possible? Research discoveries and inventions concerning your industry. This makes you outdated and able to know where and when to act. Being updated means one is not left out when there are significant changes in the industry. This is how you manage to stay on top.
3. Bringing together a crisis management team
No matter how small a situation might look, it is always advisable for a team of experts to assess and come up with the best solutions. The team should involve all departments in an organization. This will include the CEOs or MDs, departmental managers, legal teams, and others you deem worthy to be in that committee. What will be their role? It is very clear; understand the root of the catastrophe, name weaknesses that led to that, point out areas to adjust, and come up with various recommendations to the governing body.
4. Assessing the weak areas
This is the initial thing to look at during a crisis. Making a thorough check on every department, employee, any other vulnerable area to know where the company can be harmed most. This enables you to make plans to prioritize areas to adjust. This is a task performed by the crisis management team. For a better assessment, involve all departments.
5. Always have a crisis management plan ready
This document is necessary when it comes to a quick pick on what should be done. The plan is vital for the crisis management team to have a guide on what to do. A crisis management plan should not be drafted during the catastrophic event; this should be something thought of during the start of the business. Where do you incorporate this? In the business plan. Yes, when preparing a business plan, a crisis management plan should be included. To avoid the risks of getting general steps to follow during a crisis; these are mostly drafted by other companies. These generic plans might not address your problem fully. A customized plan that better suits the structure of the organization is what you need.
A crisis management plan should be drafted depending on the goals of the organization. This is where you get main points to address. These include stakeholders, chain of command, crisis management team members, setting up of emergency fund pool, contingency plans, holding statements, among other areas to address depending on the structure of the company.
6. Setting up a communication team
As the organization works tirelessly to prevent any further harm from unexpected events, the outside world must be notified of the whole ordeal. This is good to make a recovery and save images. The first step is to get the best spokesperson. This is the one who will be addressing everything through the available media channels.
A spokesperson is not just anyone you deem fit. This is a composed person, preferably having held the same role in the past; either with the same organization or another. This should be a self-composed person, familiar with the cameras, and doesn't lose focus during tense situations. Since the CEOs or the MDs are big names who might be trusted by the public, they should take on the task. However, being a good leader internally doesn't guarantee good external relations. This is why the right person must be assessed and deemed worthy. Anyone can take the task as long as they are the best candidate.
7. Doing brand tacking
Brand monitoring is a vital tool to enable the organization to know the public response and feelings about what is happening in the company. This is done through alerts from search engines and other sites. There are google alerts that are sent to you whenever there is a mention. Such tools are available to ensure you are updated and know what to do. Plus, these tools are provided freely. People might mention the business through the products, CEOs and Directors, and company names. These need to be monitored for any mention or review.
Among the mentions on social media, there is negative content that needs to be dealt with professionally and probably deleted if need be. Other customers might want to defend the organization but don't get enough recognition for a significant impact. These need to be given a go-ahead to save images. The team set aside for the online task should be professional when engaging with the public. This means, few responses to prevent the threads from going viral and negativity fueling. As the internal team works tirelessly to solve problems that lead to the crisis in the first place, the communication team and the online monitoring team have the duty to communicate to the employees and public on strategies being put in place to manage the situation.
When there is a selected team to address the situation, every other stakeholder wants to know what is being done. Besides communications from the communication team, the set-up committee has the responsibility of calling for a general meeting involving all stakeholders. This is aimed at providing all findings, concerning the events and areas that led to the occurrence of the crisis, weak areas that need to be addressed, any recommendations to the governing body. All these are steps set to ensure the events never occur again.
When the situation has been managed and the operations resuming to normality, the remaining process is working through recovery. This rehabilitation process means working tirelessly to ensure the competitors don't get the advantage and pull you down. One of the most important steps is brand reputation. There will be the need for strategies to ensure the brand reputation in the public is recovered and shaking away all the negative statements. This will be done through the introduction of better marketing ideas.