Crisis Management Strategies

When an emergency or a crisis occurs, here are five steps to follow:

1. Think before Acting

Stop and think before acting. Remember, action without thinking is the cause of every failure. Take a deep breath, calm down and remain objective. Refuse to react or overact. Instead, just stop and think. Take the time to find out what happened. Be clear about the problem before you act.

2. Delegate Responsibility

Delegate action wherever possible. There is a rule that says, “If it is not necessary for you to decide, it is necessary for you not to decide.” If you can possibly delegate the responsibility for handling the crisis to someone else, by all means do so. Someone else might be much better qualified to deal with it than you, or it may be someone else’s responsibility in the first place.

3. Write It Down

Whatever the crisis, write it down on your list before you take action. When you write down a problem, it helps to keep your mind cool, calm, clear and objective. Write down exactly what has happened before you do anything.

4. Get the Facts

Get the facts. Don’t assume anything. The facts are perhaps the most important elements of all in a crisis. Ask questions such as:

What has occurred? When did it happen? Where did it happen?

How did it happen? Why did it happen? Who was involved?”

Get the facts. Remember, the facts don’t lie. The more facts you gather, the more capable you will be of dealing with the problem when you take action.

5. Develop a Policy

Develop a policy to deal with a recurring crisis simple enough so that it can be implemented by ordinary people. When a crisis occurs for the first or second time, it may require tremendous intelligence, experience and energy to deal with it effectively. But if a crisis has a tendency to occur more than once, and you cannot find a way to eliminate the crisis in advance, you should by all means develop systems so that an average person can handle it in your absence.