PIO Tips for “Staying Frosty” During Disaster Response

I’ve written on this subject in the past but with Hurricane Matthew being nigh and many of my former public information officer colleagues setting up in its path (or waiting for the call to do so,) I thought I’d re-rack a version of a post I wrote two years ago about some of the intangible lessons I […]

Recognizing a Crisis Before it Becomes a Crisis

It’s a well known (and accurate) adage among crisis managers that success in responding to crisis is 90 percent in the planning and preparation. I don’t know if I agree 100 percent with the 90 percent mark but it’s pretty close. What isn’t as commonly understood is that a considerable portion of that last 10 […]

Denying Your Organization’s Issues Can Lead to Crisis

Paul wrote about the difference between issues and emergencies in one part of our Crisis Comms 101 series, and he defined issues because they’re, “… a ‘base element’ (which are) the fertile ground from which crises grow.” If your organization has unresolved issues that are the source of concern, confusion or anger amongst your stakeholders, one of […]

A Process for Key Messaging During Disaster

I’ve written about the oft under-emphasized practice of assessing the characteristics of an effective message that stands out and increases the likelihood that what’s being said is also being heard. It’s a subject Brandon and I will cover with attendees of a workshop we’re hosting in April. For the rest of you communication ninjas, I […]

Ten Years After: How Katrina Made Me a Better Crisis Responder

I’d love to change the world But, I don’t know what to do So, I’ll leave it up to you Note: This piece is the second of four we’ve put together for the 10-year anniversary of Katrina. Paul and I reported to the U.S. Coast Guard’s Public Information Assist Team the summer of 2005. Our team was in the disaster […]

Death, Taxes, Crisis in 2014

This past year reinforced the ongoing need for solid crisis management strategy and communication planning, regardless of what your organization does. I didn’t attribute this quote because in our community, as far as I can tell, this is essentially a cliché. It’s cliché because if my great, great grand pappy (conceptually pictured here) were a […]

Crisis Comms 101: Assessing the Post-Crisis Prognosis

The first post in our “Crisis Comms 101” series laid out the sucky outcomes of a poorly-managed crisis. The outcomes include long-term loss of credibility, confidence and, ultimately, the loss of support required to do what your organization does, whether it be a charity, a government agency or Fortune 500 company. In the posts that […]