Earlier this week Conducttr’s Nataly Rios spoke with Steve Hather from The Recall Institute about why he prefers to make his crisis exercises as realistic as possible and how he goes about doing that.
In the attached podcast, Steve explains that realistic simulations test the team and the crisis plan to find areas for improvement and give the client a safe environment to experience what it will be like in a product recall situation.
The CEO’s Dilemma
In any crisis, after ensuring everyone’s safety, an early priority will be to protect the brand reputation which can easily be dealt a blow if the company doesn’t get on top of the situation as events escalate quickly in a crisis.
Realistic simulations test the dynamics within companies: crucially the CEO will be faced with many opinions and advice from Legal, HR, Operations etc all potentially valid but also pulling in different directions. The company must come together to make decisions that focus on solving the key issues.
Pro Tips for Designing a Crisis Exercise
Although internal communication is crucial, it is important not to make exercises only internal-facing. When dealing with real situations, companies must deal with a range of external stakeholders.
Steve’s top tips are:
- Design the exercise with input from broad range of key stakeholders (such as regulators, consumers, suppliers)
- Understand the business you are creating the exercise for
- Understand the product
- Take inspiration from real incidents
- Make sure the team understands the process before running the exercise.
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