Amb. Christiana Jolaoso
Ed. 162/ 24.03.2021
Organizations face different issues, ranging from the dwindling of operational responses to project falters, stakeholder confusion, anger and negative vibes. Team members disagree on strategy deployment, and malfunctioning machines slow down production while communication channels break down.
Every growing organization has a down-time, and a competitor might just poach a key staff. And so we wonder, ‘How do we keep our organization on track?’
A crisis is any event that threatens the safety of people or properties and interrupts the day-to-day running of an organization. It can damage an organization’s reputation and negatively influence its survival.
Strategies for Crisis Management
Just as no country has a smooth sail on the path to national development, knowing what to do and how to do it distinguishes trailblazers from others.
When an organization encounters a crisis, the management needs to be flexible enough to change course to ensure survival.
Crisis Management involves identifying any threat posed to an organization and its members and responding effectively and accurately to such threat.
Here are some strategies for managing crises:
Plan for Crisis Using Teams
Failure to plan for a crisis is planning to fail in a crisis.
Top management leaders navigate through dynamic situations and priorities with no ample time to plan and respond to all. Hence, there is a need to grow a team that would specialize in crisis leadership.
The team members need to develop a common mindset and synergy, which will help them identify and analyze the organizational strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT).
The crisis team equally needs to deploy flexible structures and strategies adaptable to changes and long-term organizational needs in crisis management.
Having a working team prepare for, and tackle crises will help the organization recover and get back to normal operations.
Timely Responsiveness to Crisis
Glossing over bits of crisis will make events degenerate further. Concealing issues that need early reporting will only cause more damage to the issue at hand. It is often advisable to be quick and factual in reporting events that can grow into complex crises.
It is ideal to train the crisis management team to be conscious of their response time to crises.
Identify Causal Factors of Events
Leaders should take the initiative and identify the causes of the crisis. It is easier to devise the right strategies to overcoming pitfalls when causes are spelt out. In searching for reasons, don’t focus on people but events.
It is also healthy to avoid isolated events. Statements such as: “Mrs. Abbey slammed the door at me” is an isolated event. It is only an outcome of a previous event. We need to delve into the conversation that led to that behavior.
Accumulate Accurate, Relevant and Timely Information
Crisis management requires speaking to the right people with accurate information. Incomplete or misleading information will cause more harm than good in a crisis. Do not. prejudge situations without getting the required facts.
Build Effective Communication Plans with Teams
Management should communicate with the team members on clear-cut written guidelines to identify their roles in finding practical solutions to crises. Ineffective communication can leave an organization worse off.
All media of communication, such as press releases and statements, should go through a channel. This approach will curb grapevine or misleading information from other invalid sources that can make an issue degenerate into a disaster.
A primary spokesperson should be selected to represent the organization in crisis processes.
Discuss Objectively and Empathetically
A round-table discussion is required for crisis resolution. That is where affected workers discuss issues and arrive at mutually acceptable solutions.
In crisis management, there would always be hard feelings among victims. It is okay for a crisis manager to be objective in assessing events and people. However, they should be empathetic to possible emotional responses from affected persons. They should be sensitive, caring and not deflect blame.
Set the Right Action Points
All Employees should be optimistic in crisis resolution.
After discussion, team leaders should understand the situation. They should avoid baseless rumors and negative attitudes. They should instead take the proper steps.
For instance, aggrieved persons may need to apologize to one another. It is advisable not to lash out at one another.
To avoid repeated crises, organizations should develop workable guidelines and set future courses of action.
The first step to crisis management is when people know what to do, when, and how to do it.
Every organization is vulnerable to crises. Crises are a lump that can destroy a whole leaven in any organization.
Glossing over their possibilities and acting as if we are immune to crises without planning for their occurrences will lead to unfavorable outcomes and sudden disasters.
Organizations are a smaller unit of society, so we need to stop crises from escalating to national or global levels.
Together we can overcome the contagious harmful impediment called: ‘CRISIS0’!
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