The objective of crisis management is to develop structured solutions to crisis and emergency situations by allocating and utilizing effective resources to ensure minimal impact to people, reputation and assets in this order of priority. Below are seven points that should be considered given the current circumstances around the coronavirus outbreak and its impact on the meetings industry.
- Streamline communications by setting up a crisis communication team that are responsible for managing the communication strategy and formulating key messages.
- The goal of your crisis communication is to give responsible advice and information to draw a fair and balanced picture of the situation, and not create more fear than is realistically needed. Be open and transparent.
- Create a central hub of information – such as our live blog.
- Make it clear to everyone involved who can make official comments on behalf of your organization.
- Crisis communication strategy very much evolves around whether to be reactive or proactive. It’s a thin line to balance on when deciding when to move from only answering questions, to proactively releasing information to raise awareness of the situation. Ultimately, the decision you make should put the safety of people first.
- When it comes to media, provide facts, be concerned for the people affected and have an answer to the question – “what are you doing about the situation”? At no point should you guess or speculate, answer questions you don’t understand or speak with the media ‘off record’.
- Above all else - be prepared!
We suggest you read the entire ICCA Crisis Management white paper to understand crisis management fully and how to prepare before, during and after an event.