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Who Needs a Crises Communications Plan?

Posted on | April 20, 2010 | No Comments

You do.  Let me repeat that:  If you’re operating in today’s modern world providing products, services, information or advice to others, YOU need a communications plan for emergencies and crises that might befall you. 

It’s even more important today when everyone’s a citizen journalist, filmmaker, or photographer with access to the global publishing platform called “the Internet.”  When you think about it:  It’s like the ‘common man’ (woman) has started channeling Lois Lane infused with the xray vision of Superman!  Maybe crises communications planning can be your kryptonite!

What got me thinking about this was an event announcement I saw for Business Volunteers Unlimited, which is hosting a crisis communications and media relations seminar for nonprofit board members and staffs on May 7th.  (If you’re a nonprofit business in the larger Cleveland area, you should definitely register for this event to brush up on your crises communications planning skills.  Click here for more information.) 

BVU’s registration site cast crises communication in a very modern light for me with this statement: “In today’s world of “gotcha” journalism, incendiary cable news programs, Facebook, Twitter, digital cameras capable of sending hi-def pictures to CNN within minutes and pervasive distrust of institutions and authority, reputational threats can have an immediate and deadly effect on the ability of nonprofits to recover, rebuild and reposition themselves after a crisis.  They say it takes a lifetime to build a reputation — and only a few seconds to destroy one. With information flying around on internet time, knowing exactly how to handle media calls and visits are critical skills for nonprofit leaders and executive directors.” 

Yes, and it’s not only nonprofits who need to pay attention.  But nonprofits often have less resources, so planning ahead becomes possibly even more strategic for them.

What about you? Whether you’re regional, national, or global, a manufacturer or in the service business, nonprofit or for profit, your reputation can be gone in an instant.  In an Internet instant!  (Which I think is even faster…) 

Time to do something about it…

Some resources on crises communications to help you get started:
– Seven Dimensions of Crises Communication Management: A Strategic Analysis and Planning Model© by James E. Lukaszewski, APR, Fellow PRSA:

– Crisis Communication Plan: A PR Blue Print by Sandra K. Clawson Freeo:

 If you have a resource which you’d like to share, please feel free to drop in and comment…

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