Toss Your Involved Crisis Plan, But Ensure You Lead with Internal Communication

[Editor’s Note: This month, we discuss in-crisis moments, after you’ve determined you’re in a crisis. Our dialoguers are veteran communicators and authors Eric Dezenhall, co-founder and president of DC-based Dezenhall Resources, and Chris Rosica, president of Rosica Communications of NJ. Both whack at a few sacred cows in this dialogue. For example, Dezenhall tells us long, involved pre-crisis planning is largely useless. As Mike Tyson said, “Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.”  Similarly, Rosica emphasizes a simple, three-pronged approach to planning that emphasizes the entire company, as opposed to focusing on the center. In addition, he also offers a monthly plan for building an organization’s crisis acumen. Moreover, while many crisis pros concentrate on external messages, Dezenhall and Rosica lead with internal communication. Their remarks were edited lightly. A shorter version of this dialogue will run in October’s Crisis Insider.]

Crisis Insider: I know we wanted to talk about in-crisis issues, but we have to ask about your view of pre-crisis planning as it’s so different.

 Dezenhall: [Pre-crisis planning is] largely useless.

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