Crisis Management Quotables…on Trust and Communication

Erik Bernstein crisis communications Leave a Comment

Building trust is a must if you want communications to be effective

A quote I came across from Dr. Stephen Covey, author of the famous “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People”, really got me thinking. Too often, those at the center of crises mistakenly believe their stakeholders have an obligation to give any weight to what they’re saying. Really, nobody “has to” listen to, read, watch, or believe one bit of what you’re putting out there, and the only way to overcome that is to build some level of trust.

“When the trust account is high, communication is easy, instant, and effective.” ― Stephen R. Covey

If you’ve done nothing to instill trust in your stakeholders, put forth no effort to show you’re a valuable and reliable source of information, then you’re going to be fighting an uphill battle when it comes to crisis communications. If you’ve put in the effort to nurture the relationship and the trust between yourself and those same stakeholders then it really can be as simple as, “we say it, they believe”.

This isn’t to say you won’t have to put in work to get the message in front of your desired audience, or that there won’t be other, potentially negative narratives surrounding serious crises, but it does mean your side of the story will have a solid foothold, and that’s a good place to start.

Erik Bernstein

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