Presentation to Jiangsu delegation


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Presentation on emergency information delivery in the Ontario government and use of crisis communications techniques. The presentation was given to a delegation of communicators and government officials from Jiangsu province in China.

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  • Thanks for the opportunity … Good afternoon … I’ll take a few minutes to explain how the Ontario government would communicate with its citizens during an emergency and what approach it would use to do just that.
  • Here’s a brief overview of what we’ll cover today … Don’t hesitate to interrupt me !
  • Two perspective: from our audiences and from our own. To succeed we need to ensure that our audiences will hear what we’re saying … That’s the reason for using a crisis communications approach!
  • Emergency management: structure starts at the municipal level … same for emergency information delivery. Model helps ensure critical elements of a successful communications response: coordination of messaging consistency of messaging accuracy of messaging
  • Before digital era: news limited to space on print page and newscasts Now with Internet … unlimited at near-zero cost People can now share their own experience directly with each other … and information … a challenge. now at least one third of our audience does not get its information from traditional media: print, TV or radio
  • Everyone armed with a phone/camera Twitter used extensively during the Mumbai crisis … 80 messages from witnesses every 5 seconds ! + blogs from hostages ! Also used to direct blood donors to specific hospitals and provide contact numbers … Puts renewed emphasis on providing prompt info Hurricane Ike and marriage of new and traditional media
  • authorities criticized for waiting hours to respond to incidents … pressure is increasing: US Airways took heat for waiting for 13 minutes to put out information after one of its planes landed in the Hudson River in New York. don’t just use a website … make sure you link to social media platforms that people will use/visit to get info. they are there … join them to engage !
  • Be there and be relevant … don’t participate and be ignored You have the info … present best face on your response Rules do apply: prompt, honest and open response … although sometimes you need to be direct: re Hurricane Ike.
  • Forget the normal way you do things … Can’t think the same way or say things the same way … Because your audience WILL NOT think the same way they normally do !
  • A communications response to a crisis must be: immediate … occupy the public space … because of social media being out there with relevant, accurate information within minutes will go a long way to establish your voice as one of authority … people will then look for you !
  • All the pieces fit together. Don’t just focus on the tools: twitter, website or facebook. Ensure you have the right plan, with the right people … with the right training and the right messaging in place !!!
  • Who does what when the phone rings at two o’clock in the morning? Does your staff know what they should do? Is your leadership readily available to present your organizations’ response? Are your people reachable 24/7 ?
  • train as many people as possible in media relations … have your leaders available as the “face” of your organization having the right people with the right set of skills and training is key in having an effective response to an incident or crisis.
  • Proven record … lots of scientific evidence and research behind it. Used by many large government organizations involved in emergency response/management. Based on differences in how our brains process information in routine situations and during a crisis or stressful times. Let me explain …
  • Test your plans as often as possible! Important to ensure that you update your risk analysis on which you base your communications response.
  • Prepare message maps on all your hazards … risk-specific communications Ensure you have trained spokespeople exercise key crisis communications components regularly … as part of exercise program crises will happen … are you prepared?
  • Presentation to Jiangsu delegation

    1. 1. Providing Emergency Information to Ontarians October 2009
    2. 2. Today’s presentation <ul><li>Introduction </li></ul><ul><li>Emergency information in Ontario </li></ul><ul><li>Changing expectations and the impact of social media </li></ul><ul><li>How to meet these new challenges by using a crisis communications approach </li></ul><ul><li>Conclusion and questions </li></ul>
    3. 3. Emergency information <ul><li>What our audiences need to know to protect themselves, their families, property and the environment. </li></ul><ul><li>What we need to communicate to help ensure our audiences will adopt the right behaviour during a crisis or emergency. </li></ul>
    4. 4. In Ontario
    5. 5. The New Media revolution
    6. 6. Everyone is a reporter <ul><li>Instantaneous Information </li></ul><ul><ul><li>New media and mobile phones </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Even traditional media taking it up </li></ul></ul>
    7. 7. Changing expectations <ul><li>Audiences expect a response from authorities within minutes. </li></ul><ul><li>They expect information offered on many different platforms. </li></ul><ul><li>A participative approach in communications. </li></ul>
    8. 8. New Media and your response <ul><li>One choice: to participate or not … Occupy the space. </li></ul><ul><li>Tone is important: conversational approach </li></ul>
    9. 9. What’s a crisis? <ul><li>What’s a crisis? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Surprise </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Public scrutiny </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Media coverage </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Not routine </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Loss of control </li></ul></ul>
    10. 10. Meeting the new challenges <ul><li>Why use a crisis communications approach? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ensure effective communications and that your audience adopt the right behaviour. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Enhances your capacity to offer a prompt communications response to incidents and crises </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Helps establish an organization’s credibility. </li></ul></ul>
    11. 11. Crisis communications planning <ul><li>The Four “Ps” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Plans </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>People </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Prepare </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Practice </li></ul></ul>
    12. 12. Plans <ul><li>Detailed procedures </li></ul><ul><li>Monitoring and staff availability </li></ul><ul><li>Delegation of authority </li></ul><ul><li>Informing all audiences: external but also internal </li></ul><ul><li>Using all channels to communicate </li></ul>
    13. 13. Your people <ul><li>Who speaks for your organization? </li></ul><ul><li>Training: media relations and crisis communications … don’t send untrained spokesperson in front of cameras and microphones! </li></ul><ul><li>Are alternates available? </li></ul><ul><li>Staff empowerment … delegation of authority to effectuate prompt response </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t forget to communicate with your own employees and staff. </li></ul>
    14. 14. Prepare! <ul><li>Crisis communications technique </li></ul><ul><li>Message mapping </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Science-based … on target messaging </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Easy to use …. Visual representation </li></ul></ul><ul><li>You can anticipate questions/issues and develop key messaging ahead of time on multiple scenarios. </li></ul>
    15. 15. Practice! <ul><li>Solid exercise program in place </li></ul><ul><li>Test your plans … not your people! </li></ul><ul><li>Determine if your communications scenarios or risk analysis corresponds to your audience’s needs </li></ul>
    16. 16. In Summary <ul><li>Anticipate </li></ul><ul><li>Prepare </li></ul><ul><li>Practice </li></ul><ul><li>Questions ??? </li></ul>