Every workplace encounters crisis at some point or other. Be it a natural disaster, a workplace violence, accident, or the one gripping the world currently – COVID-19 disease, one thing that can help organizations cope, regardless of the nature of the crisis, is advance planning. However, many companies are usually not prepared or have a crisis plan in place and this is especially true for small businesses. Advance planning is imperative for effective crisis management. Every business should think about how a crisis can impact its employees, suppliers, customers, and the brand, and be prepared to deal with it, regardless of the size of the company. It’s the responsibility of the HR leaders to develop a strategic plan considering the safety, health and welfare of the people associated with the organization. A crisis management plan is all about building the capacity of the employees to handle adverse situations using knowledge and strategies and making the right decisions that ensure business continuity.
Take a look at the 4 essential components of effective crisis management in the workplace:
- Prepare a Plan
HR managers should collaborate with organizational leaders to identify the key emergencies that the company might encounter. This should be followed by assessment of the threat to determine the resources required for business continuity. Keeping in mind the possible crisis and available resources, the management should define the different components of a crisis management plan like emergency response plan, crisis communication plan, business continuity plan, IT plan and more.
- Build a Team
Building a crisis management team and assigning them the responsibility of developing policies to be followed during crisis is essential. The team must consider all options and possibilities before formulating contingency plans. Also, the team should have members from all areas and departments. It’s also important to consider the legal aspects. The management needs to define each role explicitly and assign responsibilities accordingly.
- Train Your Employees
Your employees must have adequate information and training to handle the crisis. Communicating with employees during a crisis or providing them with information beforehand can be done via communication channels that may include company intranet, HR help center, telephone hotline, daily bulletin board postings, email updates, etc. Organizations can also have password-protected internet site for managerial discussions. Training is also crucial to make sure everyone knows what to during an emergency.
- Plan for Recovery
Getting back on track after the crisis is over is often challenging. Employees lose momentum, become stressed out and get demotivated, and to tackle this, HR managers need to have a recovery plan in place. Sometimes organizations lose valuable employees during crisis or there is a change in work environment. A strong recovery plan is must to help the company as well the employees regain the momentum and zeal.
Crisis management in an organization involves anticipating the adverse situations and having a robust plan and process to deal with them. Having competent people around who can put things into perspective and make the right decisions is important. Solutions for crisis management can come from even the most unexpected places and having a plan in place can help preserve the continuity and safety of business operations.