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preparation

Are you prepared for a Peloton-style crisis?

The Peloton crisis got me thinking…

What if something terrible happened to you?

Every organization is vulnerable to a crisis. On many levels.

If you ignore it – it doesn’t disappear.

An employee sends out a racist tweet. You lay off workers. Your CEO gets in a car crash. There’s video of an employee doing something illegal. Or your product kills someone in a popular TV show.

Maybe it’s not even your crisis – but a vendor or client of yours is having a crisis.

The media calls.

You need to answer them. And release an internal statement, or even better, a video.

You don’t know what to do or say.

There are three rules for crisis management to remember:

  1. Acknowledge the issue
  2. Take responsibility quickly (think Extreme Ownership Jocko Willink style)
  3. Overcorrect

The good news is, this is easier if you prepare.

So how do you prepare for the unexpected?

  1. Brainstorm for any possible crises that can affect your organization. Once you identify the possibilities, you will see there are steps you can take to prevent certain ones from happening. Do so.
  2. Identify your crisis team. Who are the people the team will look towards for guidance?
  3. Choose and train your spokesperson. This is BIG. Make sure the spokesperson is trained for a crisis and knows how to stay on message even while managing the hardest questions. Outline which spokesperson, if more than one, is handling which news outlet i.e. local and national news outlets, social media, newspaper, etc.
  4. Notification and monitoring. How are you going to notify employees, stakeholders, and the public?
  5. Develop your crisis messages. When everything hits the fan, having this mapped out will be hugely beneficial when time is of the essence.
  6. Assess and adapt messages. When the crisis is on… assess and adapt to the situation in real-time.
  7. Post-crisis: inspect. After the dust has settled, inspect how your team and organization handled the crisis and determine what could have been done better and faster.

The basic steps of effective crisis communications are not difficult, but they require work in order to minimize the damage.

The impact on your financial and reputation’s bottom line will be more severe if you do not plan.

Employees and other stakeholders won’t know what’s happening and will become confused and angry.

Your organization will be perceived as inept and possibly criminally negligent.

The media crisis will last MUCH longer.

Preparedness is KEY.

P.S. I just gave you a brief rundown of what to do in a crisis, but if you are really serious about crisis preparedness, check out this video where I go into more detail.

P.P.S. I’ve created a special program just for healthcare professionals who need media training so they can confidently show up on camera, attract more patients, move up in their careers, and let their expertise shine. If that is you or you know someone who can benefit from this, Learn More Here.

P.P.P.S. Whenever you’re ready… here are 3 more ways I can help you build your brand, own your voice, and stand out:

  1. Want more tactical advice you can implement today? Check out my blog here for great articles, stories, and lessons I’ve shared over the years.
  2. Looking for one-on-one coaching or a consultation with me? Schedule a complimentary call to speak to our team about how we can help you. Schedule your call here.
  3. Follow me on Instagram here for more media and public speaking tips, videos… and a little fun.

Preparing for an emergency like the Las Vegas shootings

Picture courtesy of ABC News

My prayers are with you – especially if you had friends or family hurt in the Las Vegas murders. My prayers are with all of us as we keep going forward after each shooting. After each mass casualty.

After any major event, experts are needed for the media coverage.

A few hours into the Las Vegas coverage Monday, I started working on a project for a Chicago TV booker. She was searching for law enforcement professionals for an interview regarding the shooting.

After 20+ years in media, I know lots of good men and women who are currently in or retired from law enforcement.

I reached out to former Chicago Deputy Police Chief, Joe Gandurski, to see if he was available to do some TV.

This isn’t something we want to think about — but here is what the former deputy police chief suggests you do to plan for an emergency like the Las Vegas shootings.

Please read and share this post with your friends. I hope you never have to use this information.

First, here’s the link to the segment I booked Gandurski on. He was live on Chicago’s WCIU-TV yesterday morning.

Now, here are the details from former Deputy Chicago Police Chief, Joe Gandurski, so you can easily share them with friends:

The main goal in any such situation is to survive it. In some of the school shootings simply locking the classroom door was sufficient to save many. In a situation like Las Vegas, a person needs to do whatever he or she can to survive, there are thousands of people in the venue. No one knows what is going on, there is a good while before the situation is grasped, then panic, and what to do? Everyone starts running toward the exits. New possibilities of being trampled, etc. People are dropping around you, no one knows where the shots are coming from, what to do?

The answer to that question is that you use all your instincts and senses and intuition to decide what to do. Your immediate goal is to move from the open to cover, any cover, under the stage, under the sound control area, behind a cement light stand, a concession stand, and then observe and move with the goal of separating yourself distance wise from the shooter as you deem his/her location, a clue is that bodies are not dropping around you. Some folks in Vegas scrambled under cars.

Remember concealment may hide you but may not stop a bullet. Cell phones may be useless with everyone calling. Stay alert, keep a low profile, stay out of the open. If you decide to move, have a place to duck or cover on the way to reach your next position.  Move quickly and not in a straight line.

As a preventative measure, one should always:

  • evaluate the conditions of the venue
  • determine where to go if something like this happens
  • locate the exits
  • avoid wearing flip-flops or heels and wear clothing that allows you to move unrestricted and protects you from debris
  • identify good cover and concealment areas
  • keep your wits about you and be alert
  • be alert to the possibility of multiple shooters at multiple locations
  • be flexible and alert to circumstances as they unfold

The way to help the wounded is to move to safety and report what you saw to authorities. Let them help and treat the wounded. They have equipment and experience. Remember also that law enforcement will be just as confused at the beginning. In this situation, there was probably no way to determine where the shots were coming from for quite a while. When they arrive, they will be looking for information, anyone armed, anyone injured. If you have a weapon in view, you could be shot by responding police.

This is a behavior-changing situation. The idea of going to a concert and getting wasted on alcohol or drugs and having fun is now a risk that people should seriously consider.

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Thank you to former Deputy Chicago Police Chief, Joe Gandurski for those tips.

Please share this post with your friends.

Again, I hope you will never have to use this information.

Be safe,

Kathryn