While reading about the origin of the Boy Scout motto, "be prepared", I ran across some interesting trivia. Did you know the original motto describes a state of readiness in both mind and body to do your duty? What exactly does that duty entail?
According to Wikipedia, the motto encompasses two distinct realms (bolded emphasis mine):
Sage advice for crisis planning.
In Listen, Engage, Respond, my latest e-book, the "Respond" chapter begins with six benefits of having a crisis plan in place before a crisis hits. You would think this is a no-brainer, but it's not. If everyone followed this process, we wouldn't have such fascinating case studies to learn from. So if you're contemplating a crisis plan, remember two things: odds are that you will have a negative event surface online in the next year, and if you don't have a plan it could cost you money, reputation, and potential fans/customers.
If you have successfully employed listening and engagement strategies in the social media space, you have the basic foundation for using social media successfully in a crisis. The biggest challenge to organizations in crisis is trying to develop a social media presence from square one during a crisis. Successful organizations plan for crisis by becoming active in the social space now.
Here are six rock solid benefits to having a crisis communications plan in place before a crisis.
1. Your protocols are defined by best practices, research, and organizational culture, not based on emotions and reactions in real-time.
2. Staff roles are defined and delineated for smooth, real-time implementation.
3. Staff can be trained and agencies can be contacted so the organization can “hit the ground running” in the event of an emergency.
4. Leadership and spokesperson roles can be defined and media training provided to ensure confidence in public communication.
5. Operations can be integrated with communications so the right and left hand can work together. Triage response is planned.
6. Organizations that plan and train for a crisis incur less loss and can mitigate a crisis faster than those who do not.
Are you ready?
(from the e-book, Listen, Engage, Respond. Image from pakalertpress.com)