Crisis Communication is no longer a luxury in today’s marketplace; it is a necessity. Sound and proven crisis communication tools are effective, and need to be in place long before a crisis happens. Whether your cybersecurity has been compromised, or misconduct from a highly visible alumna that has been in the media, you need to know how to respond, what to say and when to say it.
More than just the words you use, effective crisis and risk communication combines a set of skills including nonverbal communication, engaged listening, managing stress in the moment, the ability to communicate assertively, and the capacity to recognize and understand your own emotions and those of the person you’re communicating with. Effective public relations are the glue that helps you deepen your connections to others and improve teamwork, decision making, and problem solving. It enables you to communicate even negative or difficult messages without creating conflict or destroying trust.
A rapid response communications operation is vital to winning the day and building a snowball of long-term success. But “rapid response” is an overused term these days- it means much more than simply monitoring the media and assembling email distributions of news clips – any firm can do that. To Watermark, it means being able to see a damaging storyline emerging in those clips and knowing how to handle it – quickly and decisively.
This is all the more important today, now that digital media causes public conversation to shift over a matter of not weeks, days or even hours, but minutes.