4 More Tips For Being A Better Crisis Management Consultant

Looking to improve your crisis management consulting skills? Take these 4 tips to heart.

We find that people who gravitate towards crisis management – as we so often say, “whether it’s in your job description or not” – have a thirst for learning, regardless of whether they’re looking to break into the biz or have 30+ years in the trenches. One of our most popular recent posts was Jonathan Bernstein’s “5 Tips For Being A Better Crisis Management Consultant”, and a number of you were kind enough to share your own lists and allow us to with pass them along to our readers. After all, it’s a continuously evolving field, and the more we all focus on being stronger consultants, the better we’re able to serve our clients, employers, and communities.

In today’s post we’d like to share a set of contributions from our colleague Andrea Obston, President of Andrea Obston Marketing Communications. Here are  4 More Tips For Being A Better Crisis Management Consultant:

4 More Tips For Being A Better Crisis Management Consultant

  1. As soon as the possibility of a crisis arises, send out a memo that reminds everyone in the organization not to speak to the media or bloggers and that they should send them to the one person who’s handling the crisis communications. Also, remind them that you would prefer they not talk about the situation on social media. Check the wording for this last part with an attorney as no employer is allowed to dictate what an employee can put on their personal social media. You can, however, request it.
  2. If you are an outside crisis consultant, consider having the law firm hire you. In many situations that means their privilege can extend to you so you won’t be deposed in a trial. States vary on this, so consult an attorney to confirm this.
  3. When a client first comes to you with a crisis, hear them out. Don’t cut them off when it comes to the details. They may or may not be relevant, but they simply may need to talk and you are there to listen. If you cut them off when you think you’ve gotten the gist, they will go back to the narrative anyway. So, let them play it out.
  4. Make sure to count employees as one of your target audiences. They are often overlooked. In many cases, these people are personally hurt or feel betrayed by the revelations. Also, they have to keep working through the crisis and it will, inevitably, make that tougher. They need to be heard, informed and, post-crisis, nurtured.

This list is a great reminder that, while the field of crisis management consulting changes often, the core skills of listening, clear communication, and strategic thinking regarding how any given action could cause things to go off the rails are always essential to success.

Did you miss the first post in this series? You can find it by clicking here.

Erik Bernstein