Indeed what is a crisis simulation?
In easy terms, it is when we recreate a potential emergency situation, and your team have to deal with the PR fall out – reacting in real time.
This could involve the whole company, your senior leadership team, your PR department, or another group which might have to handle the fall-out of a crisis.
The benefit is that you see how your team perform under pressure and where any gaps are.
Our crisis simulations are fast and furious, a step up from one of our standard full day crisis communications training courses. During the simulation delegates are put through their paces in a series of challenging situations and interviews, with a team of facilitators providing support.
We will recreate a damaging situation – perhaps a data breach, a warehouse fire, or a whistleblower revealing corruption or fraud. There will be a series of ever-worsening stages, each one more of a threat.
The delegates will each have a role – CEO, director of communications, head of operations, head of health and safety, legal/compliance, etc. The teams have to plot out how they would respond at each point.
The situation is revealed in a series of calls from staff, calls from journalists, social media posts, interviews, and doorsteps, over anything from a couple of hours to a day.
The delegates need to consider what to say, who to say it to, how to say it.
Once the simulation is over, we make an assessment of how well the team has responded, discuss the consequences of the actions they decided to take and advise on where improvements could be made.
We have run crisis simulations in-house for clients and also for peer groups, where we create a generic situation they can all identify with.
Crisis simulation + crisis strategy workshop
One brilliant way to take on board the lessons learned in the crisis simulation is to follow it up with a crisis strategy workshop.
During the workshop we take you through the dos and don’ts of crisis communications. We explore who should take responsibility in a crisis situation, how to prepare messages and spokespeople, and how to brief staff, customers, stakeholders and the media.
- Discover how crises escalate and how the media are likely to react
- Assess and prioritise the risks to your business
- Put in place the building blocks of your crisis communications strategy
- Develop key messages & holding statements
- Learn how to manage the demands of print & broadcast
- Find out how to handle online criticism and take advantage of social media in a crisis
By the end of the day, you will have a deeper understanding of potentially damaging issues and a simple strategy to deal with the media should the worst happen.