Crises are inevitable. And when they happen, you can either be an adapter to them or be put out of business by them. Companies that are able to say, “Here are the challenges, but here’s what we’re going to do to modify, to adapt, and to change our behaviors and out service model” are the ones who will emerge the winners.
While you can’t avoid crises, you don’t have to navigate through them alone. One of the major values of working with a professional employer organization (PEO) is having a partner who has your back during difficult and unforeseen times. And if the world learned nothing else from Covid-19, it’s that you need to be prepared and ready to pivot quickly into adapter mode.
It’s all about business continuity.
PEOs have the technology and plans in place to protect their clients from service disruptions caused by natural disasters, civil unrest or, as in the case of Covid-19 or a similar occurrence, pandemics. And, as their businesses readjust or reopen, PEOs can help craft revised strategies based on any changes resulting from the disruption.
Communication takes on a new level of importance during a crisis.
In times of crisis, the importance of strong, ongoing communication cannot be overstated. Emotions run high, which can threaten objectivity. As always, but with an added element of timeliness, communication must be frequent and factual.
- It’s critical to remain calm as you implement your crisis communication plan – and it’s equally important to avoid speculation. Work only with known facts. Speculation disguised as advice can be very dangerous, especially during a crisis. Be honest and transparent, and clearly explain what you know. Don’t shoot from the hip or play loose and fast with facts.
- A crisis naturally produces anxiety, and everyone has the same question: “How will this affect me?” People want reassurances during times of uncertainty – and good leaders deliver.
Don’t let a crisis shake your identity.
Rather than weaken your identity as an organization, a crisis should reinforce it. And rather than cause you to lose sight of your mission, it should embolden it. Your priorities may be temporarily rearranged, but they should remain undeterred.
- Measure business and related communication results on a more frequent basis. Conditions on the ground can cause change quickly during a crisis. So, have actionable data to know whether to alter your strategy or stay the course.
- Don’t lose sight of your KPIs. During a crisis, you probably want to review them even more frequently. By doing so, you can react more quickly to fluctuations that will inevitably crop up.
- Each day, your team should seek to answer two questions: How is the crisis evolving? And, what impact is it having on our company? Internal performance metrics are essential, but the most telling indicator of how your business is doing during a crisis is learned through client feedback.
These are some guidelines when it comes to crisis management. Let’s hope you don’t need to turn to them often. But when you do, your PEO partner will prove invaluable. In addition to the comprehensive range of HR services they can provide to help keep your business on the growth track, you can rest assured that your crisis and business continuity needs will not go unanswered. To learn more, contact the Lyons HR team today.