Crisis Communication Presentation for KPA

In any organization—It’s always highly likely
that some kind of crisis is going to hit.
No organization should be without a Crisis
Communication Plan (CCP).
CCP includes:
1. A list of whom to notify in an emergency
2. An approach to Media Relations
3. A strategy for notifying employees
4. A location to serve as crisis headquarters
5. A description of the Plan
Fearn-Banks (2007):
Business is ruined; it runs out of business,
it is sued and the CEO is charged.
2. Organization exists but has lost some
image, respect and financial position.
3. Wins, in a hard fought battle, and it is
seen as favorably as before or perhaps
A crisis in an organization, real or pending,
means its reputation is on the line.
Communication is transactional
1. Share Meaning
2. Create Understanding
3. Develop Relationship
Key Skills for Better Communication
1. A Large Repertoire of Skills
2. Ability to Perform Skillfully
3. Empathy/Perspective Taking
The Art of Listening: an active process that
involves paying close attention to, and making
sense of what we hear.
Use their eyes as well as their ears—to
decode a speaker’s nonverbal and verbal
Listen for main ideas—lntroductions,
transitions, and conclusions to alert you to
the main points.
Watch for the speaker’s nonverbal cues—
body language is an excellent source of
Negotiation & Conflict Management: Before a
crisis there is always an embedded conflict which
must be managed. As a good leader and
communicator to be able to:
Recognize the causes and nature of conflict
Effectively negotiate and resolve conflicts without
damaging relationships
Mediate conflicts and bring them to a successful
Remove many of the barriers that prevent conflict from
being resolved effectively
Recognize the different positions that parties within a
conflict may take and the positive and negative
effects of these positions
Communication almost impossible during a crisis;
loss of control, not able to think strategically &
media frenzy creates a siege mentality
Issue: a concern about an organization decision
that may involve a point of conflict. For
example privatization of the port, employees
demand for higher pay or change of
employment terms etc.
Crisis: requires not just decisive but also
immediate action (Cornelissen, 2008). For
example a workers strike or oil spill in KPA or
petrol leakage at KPLC etc.
Development of an Issue into a Crisis Graph
1. Latent
2. Active
3. Intense
4. Crises
Fearn-Banks (2007); FIVE STAGES:
1. Detection: Prodromes
2. Prevention/Preparation
3. Containment
4. Recovery
5. Learning Phase
Employees must learn:
1. What positive performance is and how it
will benefit the organization and the
2. What the job priorities are.
3. Positive Performance should be rewarded.
Employees perform well when their work is
recognized and rewarded.
4. Poor performance must be punished.
5. Help employees to cope with personal
problems. Management should be able to
recognize the symptoms of a personal
crisis. ( e.g. drug abuse, living beyond
one’s means etc.)
The media is always looking for a good story
with victims, villains and visuals (Argenti, 2009),
and a crisis has all these sensational elements.
1. Never say, “No comment!” to the public—
appears to be an admission of hiding
information or even guilt.
2. Do not assume that the crisis story will go
away. The media can do their stories
without you.
3. The media can also use computer files and
call up long-forgotten problems and
mistakes and in a few seconds.
The people thus hear the negative story.
The spirit of cooperation must be established. In a
1. We know and here’s’ all the information
2. We don’t know everything at this time. Here’s what
we know. We’ll find out more and let you know
3. We have no idea, but we’ll find out and tell you.
Give the media access to the material they need,
background information, statistics, photographs and
What happened?
2. Were there any deaths or injuries?
3. What is the extent of the damage?
4. Is there a danger of future injuries or
5. Why did it happen?
6. Who or what was responsible?
7. What is being done about it?
8. When will it be over?
9. Were there any warning signs of the
1. Do listen to the whole question before answering
2. Do use everyday language
3. Be courteous
4. Do understand the reporter’s job. Respect deadlines
and return phone calls promptly.
Do try to treat a reporter as a partner, an ally in
maintaining or restoring the company’s good image.
– hence this conference’s theme: “ partnering with
the media….”
Do tell the truth – misleading or omitted facts are
also forms of lying.
Do use your crisis communication plan
Do keep employees informed about the crisis. They
may be volunteer good ambassadors.
Key Don’ts
Do not guess or speculate.
Either you know or you don’t.
2. Do not stick to a story if it has
changed, just to be consistent.
3. Do not be trapped in
predicting the future
Crisis communication is a predictive—make
correct assumptions and determine
appropriate course of action within a very short
period of time.
1. Research, polling of the audiences, which
includes crafting thorough and compelling
statements, known as “key messages” is
crucial to effective handling of a crisis.
Proactive media outreach to get the
message and context to the media and
identify and recruit third party allies who can
attest to KPA’s side of the story is a must.
Finally, striking first not to be hit is key to
effective handling of crisis at KPA.

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