Crisis at a workplace causes havoc. It holds the potential to tarnish the brand image and instil fear in employees. Organisations encounter threats regularly. There is a need to acknowledge the challenges that come with risks. Crisis communication planning is vital to combat disaster in any organisation.
Communicating during a crisis requires proper protocol, monitoring possible threats, and employee confidence. Let us take a look at how to communicate during a crisis effectively:
Planning: Planning for a crisis is crucial for all companies. Having a strategy prepared for probable threats helps in easing the communication process. The plan should include steps to tackle setbacks, communicate them well, and take eradicative measures. It should consider the phase before, during, and after the disaster happens. It helps in being prepared beforehand.
Maintain transparency: Withholding information during a disaster only causes more harm. Encouraging two-way communication and relaying relevant information without filtration is crucial. It helps gain employee trust and make them realise the gravity of the situation.
Use of right channels: Using appropriate mediums to transfer information is vital during a crisis. The Internet has enabled companies to communicate without delay through emails, messages, conferencing, etc. Combination of wired and non-wired channels ensures addressing the entire workforce.
Train employees: Communication during the crisis fails if employees are unaware as to how to interpret it. They should know how to prepare and handle disasters. Training employees for an emergency is the first step towards tackling it. It sets a protocol for the employees to follow, which makes them proactive.
Relevant information: Companies should make sure communication is efficient. It is essential to have department-specific information relayed. It confuses the employees if they get bombarded with irrelevant information. It also distracts them from their duties unnecessarily.
Analysis and follow up: The company personnel can learn from the disaster after conducting post-crisis research. It helps in understanding the areas to improve and handle future threats effectively. Hence, it is essential to follow-up after the threat settles to plan for the next one as they are inevitable.
It is almost impossible to avoid catastrophe which if not handled wisely could harm the brand identity. Thus, a good crisis communication strategy prepares you to face adverse situations.