In the business world, crisis management is the process of dealing with a crisis. It is not just about reacting to situations as they happen but also about being proactive: preparing for possible crises, such as by having an emergency plan and team in place beforehand.
Crisis management for small businesses can be much simpler than what large corporations have to deal with—but even if you’re working from home and your company doesn’t have hundreds or thousands of employees, you still need to be prepared for any potential problems that may arise.
How Crisis Management Works
Crisis-management is preparing for and responding to an emergency situation. It can be used as a general term for all crisis management processes or, more narrowly defined, to include only those events that are actual crises.
The goal of crisis-management is to prevent situations from escalating into crises and resolve them quickly if they occur. Crisis management involves a combination of preparation, prevention, and response measures that should be taken before a crisis occurs.
Here is how you go about crisis-management.
●Identify the source of the crisis
This is the very first step in crisis-management. An effective crisis response depends on identifying where the problem originated. If a crisis is related to an error in judgment or decision, you must determine who made that decision and why. If it was an accident, you need to know what caused it and how it happened. And if there’s any blame involved, you need to be ready to take responsibility for it.
The key here is not just identifying who did what but why they did it.
Assess the situation
Don’t panic. Take a step back and ask yourself what has happened. Is it a crisis? If so, what is its nature and magnitude?
If you have been hacked, who are your customers? Are they all affected or just some of them? Do they represent only one region or several countries? How many users are affected? What information was compromised? What kind of information was exposed?
If your brand has been negatively impacted on social media or in the news, ask yourself: Are these issues isolated or have they spread to other parts of the world?
Decide on the best response option(s)
In most cases, it’s best practice not just one solution but rather several different solutions tailored specifically for each unique situation based upon its unique circumstances.
Implement your response plan
A good plan will identify who will be responsible for which tasks in case of an emergency and provide details about who should be contacted during different phases of the incident. If you’ve prepared ahead of time, this will help you move quickly and decisively during the crisis.
Evaluate your response:
Did it work? What could you do better next time? How did it affect other aspects of your business? What lessons learned can be applied to future crises? You can use this data to strengthen your future crisis management plan.
How to create a disaster management plan for your business
To develop a comprehensive disaster management plan, you’ll want first to identify all of the potential crises that could affect your business. You can do this by answering these questions:
●What are the most common natural and human-caused disasters that could affect our business?
●Which of these disasters has caused damage in other areas where we operate or sell our products or services?
Once you’ve identified all potential crises, it’s time to prioritize them based on risk. This means determining how likely each type of disaster is to occur, how severe its impact would be on your company and its customers if it did happen, and what resources (people, money) you will require for recovery from each crisis.
The more severe a potential crisis is in terms of severity and likelihood. Cost factors such as time required for recovery versus revenue loss during recovery efforts will help determine which potential crises are higher priorities for your plan development efforts.
Foremost be aware of potential dangers. When a company’s reputation or revenue stream is at stake, it needs to look for potential risks threatening its stability constantly.
Using risk assessment techniques and a reliable disaster management framework, you can do this. By assessing what could go wrong and how the company would handle it when it does, you can take steps to prevent any problems from arising in the first place.
Similarly, by creating a business continuity plan with all possible issues considered, your organization will operate smoothly even if an emergency occurs—thus reducing any negative impact on its reputation or revenues in the long run.
When problems arise, NetBaseQuid Solutions is here for you. Our experts have managed crisis events for clients, including small businesses and Fortune 500 companies.
We provide you with all the practical, strategic, analytical and planning support you need to get through a crisis quickly, efficiently and effectively.