Remember when you were a little kid and your parents told you not to do something? Didn’t the mere fact that they objected to something only make you want it more? The same rule tends to apply when the media comes knocking on your door questioning you about a subject that is less than pleasant to discuss.
I’ve read and heard far too many stories about crisis communication being handled wrong. Obviously a crisis is not good, but you can easily make things go from bad to worse by not handling media inquiries appropriately. If you try to hide they will only dig deeper and be more hardnosed about the subject at hand. Even worse, once they finally get a story together you will not have a voice. Why would you allow a one sided stored to break?
If you find yourself in this situation there are some pretty basic rules to remember. This isn’t the gospel but just some things to consider.
- Don’t hide from the story
- Provide all pertinent details and be as upfront as possible
- If something has gone wrong and it is your fault, explain the status of the situation (are people hurt), and most importantly, outline what you are going to do to try and prevent the issue from happening again
Everyone makes mistakes, but it’s how you handle the mistakes that set you apart from the rest.