How to respond to PR Crisis

How to respond to PR Crisis

Most individuals or companies never anticipate a crisis. However, it is paramount to be ready for one and have the basic skills on how to deal with it as this helps the brand recover quickly. 

Here are some steps to dealing with a crisis:

Listen to your team. Teamwork is key during a crisis. Most often than not, team leaders want to be in control during such situations, however, it is important to listen to team members and all ideas presented. 

Appoint a response team. Appointing the right people to be the voice of the company is crucial in ensuring that the company is well represented. Therefore, quickly assigning a response team to speak for the company in the middle of a crisis is critical. The team should consist of internal parties who know the company well and external professionals who are able to see and analyze the situation from a public or journalist's point of view.

Draw up a plan/ strategy and brief your team.   Failing to plan is planning to fail.  In a crisis, swiftly drawing up a strategy and briefing your team on it is essential. This ensures that there is a straightforward way of handling the situation. It also clarifies who is in charge of what. It’s important for every team member to understand their responsibilities.

Communicate transparently. Transparency is key when dealing with a crisis. Once the situation has been assessed and all facts have been put on the table, the next step would then be to come up with a transparent message that will be relayed to the general public and the parties affected. The message delivered should be honest, clear, straight to the point & professional. 

Monitor the Situation. This will involve observing how the audience responds on all platforms, i.e., online, on articles published, etc. This is crucial in guiding the next course of action.

Review the Situation. Once the crisis is over, accessing and reviewing the situation as well as being conscious of the strategies used is key. This helps in understanding what worked best and what could be improved or avoided in the future.

Point to note: Do not push the blame on other parties. Address the situation immediately and learn from it.

Geoffrey Nevine — IT Services and IT Consulting

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