Developing a Crisis Communications Plan

Determine who will be company spokesperson/people.

Develop a comprehensive crisis communications kit:

    • A list of the members of the crisis management team, which should include, at minimum
      • the CEO
      • a trusted assistant/top manager from the CEO’s office
      • heads of each department
      • public relations and marketing team members
      • legal and security.
      • In case of actual crisis, this team will be focused down to the group applicable to that specific crisis.
    • Contact information for key officers, spokespeople, and crisis management team members including
      • company and personal phone numbers
      • email addresses
      • cell numbers
      • pagers
      • faxes
      • instant message handles
      • addresses
      • even spouse’s cell numbers.
    • Fact sheets on the company, each division, each physical location, and each product offered. These should be in camera-ready condition, plus available on a disk in a generally-accepted word processor format (Microsoft Word) so they can be revised and printed out if necessary on a computer external to your facilities. Photos should also be included.  Profiles and biographies for each key manager in your company, again in camera-ready condition and on disk.
    • Copies of your company, division and product logos, your press release format and the scanned in signature of your CEO on disk in a format that works on your internal word processing program (plus one in Microsoft Word in case you have to work on a computer that isn’t tied to your network.)
    • Pre-written scripts answering key questions that you have generated through your crisis scenario analysis. Included in these scripts should be the words you use to say “we don’t have that information yet, but will let you know as soon as it becomes available.”
    • Contact information for each of your key media contacts both locally, nationally, and if appropriate, key financial press and analysts. Contact information for your appropriate political, regulatory, and union leaders should also be included. Don’t be afraid to go overboard here – if you have a large chemical release, your CEO will probably want to call not only the Mayor, but the Governor and congressional representatives.

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