If you own and operate a business, you’ll know that things can’t be plain sailing all the time; sometimes, you’ll find yourself in a crisis situation where acting efficiently will mitigate damage to your brand. Whether it’s a staff shortage, a PR disaster, or the threat of legal action, company-endangering issues strike quickly and if you’re not well-prepared with an action plan to deal with it, you can find yourself in deep water, scrabbling around for solutions to a problem that’s quickly worsening. Being mindful of these protective and reactive measures will stand you in good stead to dodge and grow from the net threat to your business.
Public relations, whether it be a solid social media team or a company spokesperson, is an area of business that’s of increasing importance in a viral age of digital boycotting and viral news. Having prepared statements to release in the event of your business getting caught up in a scandal, and having someone on your team training highly in media trends and communications, you’ll be able to roll with the punches if your business becomes embroiled in a story you’d like to snuff out.
Establishing strong contacts with a lawyer or legal team will take the weight off when situations call for quick advice or defence. Find some legal experts that you trust, preferably locally, that you’ll be able to bring into the conversation as soon as anything goes awry. In the digital age where information transparency is paramount, you’ll want to check out e-discovery services that will quickly and painlessly extract your digital information when requested in a legal dispute, avoiding delays and incrimination through a lack of expertise.
Care for Your Workforce
In the worst cases, where your staff feels overworked, underpaid and undervalued, they’ll consider employment tribunals, strike action, walkouts and other disruptive behaviour. Moreover, though, if your staff are anywhere near this point, they’ll be working inefficiently and their dedication to the job – the sort of dedication that’ll inspire them into work even if they’re feeling under the weather – will be limited. Care for your staff, and maintain an open dialogue with them, to ensure that you’re never short of productive and skilled people on your books.
Network and Build Relationships
This is a broad preventative step that will safeguard against everything from missed deadlines to exploitative business deals. Building strong and trusting relationships with both clients and other institutions that can help your business in times of trouble will gather around you the support you need to weather stormy seas. A small example, having a strong relationship with a recruitment agency will enable you to draft in extra employees at times when the workload seems impossible to cover. Little examples of shrewdness such as this will safeguard against many business disasters, so think ahead and network well.
It’s rare that a business manages to escape all unforeseen icebergs that can cause catastrophic damage, so being pragmatic in planning your preventative measures, and your response, will ensure that you come through your next rocky road with strength and guile.