Crisis communications workshop - Abu Dhabi 05.12.13


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Crisis communications workshop - Abu Dhabi 05.12.13

  1. 1. MEPRA Issues and Crisis Management December 5, 2013 Issues and Crisis Management Mike Regester Regester Larkin
  2. 2. Reputation Matters • Linked to Trust, which is broken if there is a – Gap between what you say and what you do – Gap between their expectations and your performance
  3. 3. What is reputation management? • Managing the gap between performance and expectations • Or more simply: improving performance and communication
  4. 4. Issues v Crises crisis/incident issues Speed Fast-moving Space and time Surfacing Suddenly Gradually Scrutiny Immediate / intense Sporadic Structure Rigid / formulaic Fluid Stance Reactive Proactive
  5. 5. Manage issues to prevent a crisis Origin Mediation/Amplification Organisation Opportunity to Influence Resolution Difficult to Influence Formal Constraints Pressure Period of Increasing Awareness Media Coverage Potential Issue Management Early Issue Identification Emerging Current Development Crisis Dormant
  6. 6. Where do issues come from? • Poor financial performance • Poor ‘corporate’ governance • Business and society (macro issues: global warming; child labour; fair trade etc) • Business and communities/consumers/partners (micro issues: employment practices; product contamination; food scares)
  7. 7. What’s different these days? • • • • • Erosion of authority / decline in trust – Trust in established institutions like government and the media remains shaky – Business suffering from rash of scandals – NGOs becoming most trusted institutions Growth in anti-business activism and consumer concern with “what lies behind the label” Growth in victim and litigation culture Greater scrutiny and expectations of transparency / governance 24/7 media, the Internet and USA generated content
  8. 8. Twitter Twitter is a 'connector' that has a short lifespan but high viral power Your mum or the bloke in the pub probably won't care about it But journalists and bloggers do - they are on there and listening in David Bowen,FT October 2009
  9. 9. In a nutshell, social media… • • • • • • can be the trigger can escalate a crisis unstructured, so can complicate crisis management creates new circles of trust and credibility requires up-skilling and different resources can be an asset But… • principles of good crisis management still apply • should not distract from overall strategy and objectives • still think audience first – message & medium second • credibility is still important (but the rules are different) • social media connects, but news media still has power to disseminate to masses
  10. 10. How do you manage issues? 7. Evaluate 6. Implement 5. Plan 4. Prioritise 3. Understand 3. Understand 2. Identify 1. Monitor
  11. 11. Political Step 1 - Monitoring Economic Societal Technological shareholders Legislative/Regulatory NGO activity contractors Environmental government ethics customers risk/liability business partners employees media local communities Internet values and lifestyles investment community public policy trade unions international environment academics supply chain business environment competitor activity
  12. 12. Big Brother Luke Johnson Chairman Ch 4 BBC Radio 4 – January 2007
  13. 13. Step 2 – identifying relevant issues • • Identify issues that have the potential to impact on the company – Are they gaining support / interest? Assess the type of issue – Is it media friendly? – Where is it in the lifecycle? – Are there links to other issues? – Are there any new, emerging patterns forming?
  14. 14. Step 3 – understanding issues • • Analyse the most important issues in detail – Is there a gap between performance and expectation? (Perception is reality) – Do we understand the context, current status, likely developments, potential scale and scope, triggers and escalators? – Which stakeholders can influence the issue and / or which can influence our reputation and performance? Identify an issue owner and establish a team ensuring all the right people are at the table including Operations, Legal, and Communications
  15. 15. Step 4 – prioritising issues Active attention & preparation Med Periodic assessment Continuous monitoring Active attention & preparation Low Periodic assessment Periodic assessment Continuous monitoring High Potential Impact on reputation Proactively managed Continuous monitoring Low Med Likelihood of Occurrence High
  16. 16. Step 5 – planning • • Develop a plan for each issue that: – Sets clear objectives – Creates a strategic corporate response and defines key messages – Identifies the resources needed – Describes specific operational actions – Defines communication strategies to be taken – by who, how, when and with whom – Has clear evaluation measures The issue plan should be aligned to the business plan and key operating principles and values
  17. 17. Think from the outside in Who are your stakeholders? • • • • • • Governments Regulators The local community Customers and consumers Activists And don’t forget employees • • • • What are they concerned about? What is on their agenda? What do they want to hear? What do they want to see?
  18. 18. Engage for a reason • What is our vision? • What are our objectives? • Why are we doing this? • Who are we engaging? • What will success look like?
  19. 19. Prioritise your stakeholders HIGH STAKEHOLDER CONCERN Very concerned but not critical Important and very concerned NOT CRITICAL TO OUR SUCCESS HIGHLY CRITICAL TO OUR SUCCESS Not critical and Important but not very concerned not concerned LOW STAKEHOLDER CONCERN
  20. 20. Where to focus attention Hardcore adversaries 80% + Unconditional advocates FOCUS RESOURCES ON WINNING THE BATTLE FOR THE MIDDLE GROUND 10% you are highly unlikely to influence 10% you are unlikely to need To influence
  21. 21. Steps 6 and 7 – implementing and evaluating • Implement: – Implement the action plan – Communicate effectively with stakeholders • Evaluate: – Assess the results – Evaluate success against the pre-agreed measurement criteria to determine next steps and strategy – Learn from successes, failures and mistakes – Review the plan
  22. 22. Crisis v Issues crisis/incident issues Speed Fast-moving Space and time Surfacing Suddenly Gradually Scrutiny Immediate / intense Sporadic Stance Reactive Proactive Structure Rigid / formulaic Fluid
  23. 23. Crisis preparedness process procedures audit Culture simulation training
  24. 24. Crisis management = people and process • • • • • • • Clear ownership and governance (team roles and responsibilities) Risk assessment / scenario planning / risk register Procedures and tools (manual; key contacts) Simple incident categorisation, alert and escalation criteria Competent, confident staff (coach and test) Compliance Part of your culture
  25. 25. Admin/ Log-keeper Team Leader Comms External stakeholders HR Finance Legal Operations and SMEs RRT Leader Relative Response Team MRT Leader Media Response Team Writer Monitoring Spokesperson A tried-and-tested crisis team set up
  26. 26. Common pitfalls Lack of effective communication – ensure regular briefing times, participants and formats Unclear allocation of tasks and responsibilities, duplication of work – assign RACI, review and update regularly Leadership getting caught in the detail – maintain sight of overarching strategy, delegate and follow up on detail Forgetting the external perspective – understand stakeholder perceptions as well as internal facts when making judgements and decisions Internal politics and personal ambitions influencing strategy – focus on key stakeholders and doing the right thing for the right reasons
  27. 27. The Messages! 1) 2) 3) All the Ws (almost!) People Environment Asset • Care & Concern • Control 4) Money (tomorrow) Truthful • Commitment Irrefutable Relevant = audience!
  28. 28. Crisis communication some best practice considerations: • Do the right thing ... and be seen to do the right thing – Scenario planning and preparation (worst case) – Relevant, well rehearsed procedures and people, including partners, authorities and agencies – Safety culture • Credible source of information – Range of appropriate, dedicated confident/competent spokespeople (senior/SMEs/local voice) – Proactive, transparent and accessible (esp vis social media) – internally and externally – People-focused messaging with robust Q&A • Stakeholder relationships forged in peace time – 3rd party advocates
  29. 29. Leadership Team Leading a crisis management team Global crisis structure Leading an organisation in crisis Escalation model – country, region, Very different from ‘peacetime’ leadership The figurehead role group or country, business, group Not named individuals but functions Mandate to make decisions; know powers/limitations Crisis team is strategic – reputation, bottom line, license to operate - nb: supply chain! Practice