Above is an example of just some of the key stakeholders you should consider appointing to your crisis management team:
The Leader: This is the person responsible for managing and overseeing the crisis. They rally the team to minimize the impact of an emergency on the business and its stakeholders. A leader should always have a second-in-command, in the event that they are unavailable.
Example title: VP of Comms
The Facilitator: This person knows how to get things done. They are process wizards and are always taking notes, divvying up actions and working out logistics to speed up the resolution process. They would make a good second-in-command.
Example title: Project Manager
The Rep: This person is responsible for the internal welfare and wellbeing of the employees within the company. They support internal communication, and keep the rest of the company notified of developments and decisions in relation to the crisis.
Example title: Head of Human Resources
The Tech: From data privacy breaches, to software outages (#GoogleDown anybody?) tech crises are increasingly common, so having a tech expert is super important. Depending on the crisis you’re most likely to face, this could be a member of the IT, an engineer or an analyst.
Example title: Head of IT
The Advisor: This member provides legal support to the rest of the team, in relation to legal ramifications and liability surrounding the crisis.
Example title: Head of legal
The Accountant: This team member assesses the business’ financial stability during the crisis. To help the team get through the crisis, they may decide to do things such as raise credit limits.
Example title: Head of finance
The Communicator: This person’s role is to stay in touch with clients and the media, and ensure all messaging is consistent both internally and externally. They will likely be involved in media monitoring and the implementation of crisis response, such as releasing press statements.
Example title: Head of Marketing and Communications
Of course crisis management roles can vary. Your CEO might be The Leader for example, or you may need to add a security stakeholder into the mix.
The most important thing is to have a list of key stakeholders and clearly defined responsibilities so that everyone knows what to do during the crisis.
An organisation needs to define clear responsibilities and remit in a crisis. A command and control management approach is often used. Roles should be well defined along with the scope of activity. Teams should be well drilled and have practiced crisis simulation.
Stephen Waddington, Founder
While responsibility should sit with the leader and second-in-command, crisis management is a team effort, and it’s often important for numerous people to be alerted as and when a potential crisis strikes.
An easy way to do this would be to switch on inbox alerts for all team members.
Some crisis management teams also choose to have their crisis alerts integrated into their business communication platforms.
At BuzzSumo, we allow users to integrate with Slack and set up crisis management alert channels.
This can be configured to alert every stakeholder on the crisis management team when a crisis-worthy headline exceeds a certain amount of engagement.