Crisis Management is an important part of any business plan. As business owners never know when something is going to happen that will negatively impact your business. It is important to anticipate what can happen, but not everything can be anticipated. Watching social media trends, the news, etc, can help anticipate when something is going to happen, such as with the riots in the US Captial on the 6th January 2021, this was something that was being planned for weeks and this should have led to an anticipation of this scale of the riots.
Manage a Crisis Before It Happens
Managing the crisis before it happens it key in the handling of any crisis. It is impossible to plan
for every eventuality, not everything can be anticipated. However, there are some common contingencies that you can plan for. For example; what to do if you can’t access your offices, keeping your employees up to date on the situation as you know it to be and ensuring you have set aside funds in case of an emergency. Plan for the worst possible case scenario as it can happen. (source)
Communication is an important aspect of any crisis. You need to know what you are doing and what everyone else is doing. Any communication needs to be as accurate and frequent as possible. Misinformation can cause panic and anxiety, so make sure the information given is accurate and from reliable sources. It is important o keep people posted on what is happening as it happens. (source)
As soon as it happens, people will start pointing the finger. They will be blaming anyone and everyone for what has happened. This means that your response has to calm, collected and as honest as possible. Lying or trying to cover up the situation will only make the situation worse. You need to provide explanations and own up to any mistakes that were made. (source)
After Action Review
It happened and now you need to look back and see what mistakes were made in the handling of the situation and how you can improve on what has happened. Nothing is the perfect first time around or even multiple times. There is always room for improvement and adaptation. After going through a crisis, you should have a good idea of what went well and what didn’t, so you should be able to see where you need to improve and how. (source).
not underestimate the importance of Social Media in the modern ear. Reputations can be destroyed through this, so it is important to manage it properly. Keeping an eye on social media is a good start, but you also need to respond to any crisis promptly. Silence is now often seen as evidence of guilt and that can do more damage than a bad response. Honesty and not covering up the situation is key, the truth will be found out and if you have lied or covered the situation up, then it will make you look bad
There is no real way of preparing for a crisis. No matter what you do, it is still incredibly difficult to anticipate every eventuality and even the full scale of the crisis. What you can do is prepare as best as you can and have as many contingencies as possible in place.