In today’s marketplace, the value of your company can hinge on one poorly handled crisis. Within six months, Lumber Liquidators lost nearly 85% of its value after 60 Minutes exposed some questionable business practices. VW is not only facing serious legal issues, but market conditions for their dealers pose some serious challenges. Despite the constant flow of headlines, far too many companies choose not to be prepared. In today’s media environment, that is a recipe for failure. The speed of communication today is forcing companies to rethink their crisis response plans. Consider this: within one hour Twitter and Facebook will feature more than 40 million new posts. 8.6 billion emails will be sent and YouTube will have logged 372 million video views. If you’re the hot story and not ready to respond, others will shape the story for you. In essence, you will put your future in the hands of others.
Allow me to put this is in a personal perspective. Imagine you have an opportunity to go before your senior leadership team to convince them you deserve the big promotion. Your plan is to send in the new kid who can barely string two sentences together without fumbling. Sounds ludicrous doesn’t it? I spend a lot of time talking with CEOs about their crisis preparedness and most tell me they know it’s important, but they don’t know where to start. I often paraphrase a line from Stephen Covey by saying “… first you need to understand where you stand.” To help in that effort, we created a new online tool called Crisis IQ. It’s designed to measure your company’s overall preparedness to handle a crisis. It also can give you some tips on steps you can take to get prepared. It’s free; you can stay anonymous if you choose; and it’s just a click away.