08 Apr The World in Crisis
My expectations for webinars are low. They’re often tedious, self-serving, and visually dead. Five minutes in and I bail if I’m not engaged. Then I checked in to the Agility PR Solutions & Bulldog Reporter “Crisis Communications Mastery Summit” last month. The keynote, Melissa Agnes, founder and CEO of the Crisis Ready® Institute was extraordinary. Can you make crisis communions engaging and transformative? Yes, apparently.
If you’re properly prepared, a negative event can be an opportunity to solidify’s a brand’s trust and credibility. People are listening, the media is open to you. What will you say?
Crisis communication used to mean that you dust off the voluminous plan you spent six months pushing through all sorts of bureaucratic hurdles. You know – the plan that prepares you for every contingency except the one you’re facing. That plan.
What if, as Melisssa Agnes suggests, you have an attitude and a method of responding to incidents (complaints, annoyances, negative reviews) and crisis (a material negative impact on a business that involves the C Suite) already in place. You can build a resilient organization that treats challenges as an inevitable function of doing business.
It flips the equation around.
What most impressed me about the presentation was Melissa’s focus on emotion v. logic. Emotion wins every time. Unless you deal with emotion, mitigate it, acknowledge it, then logic cannot prevail. It reminded me in a way of Buddhist teachings by Pema Chodron. There will always be discomfort and conflict at home, at work, in the world. Managing conflict could be the key to your sanity. It’s also a way to come out of a crisis in better shape than you went into it.
Melissa recently launched the Crisis Ready Institute, a diverse group of professionals on a radical mission “to better protect people, brands, and the environment in times of crisis.” It’s a great resource for PR professionals who want to stay ahead of how to communicate in a world full of conflict.