When a crisis occurs it is important for the Crisis Team Leader to communicate with affected sites and/or critical stakeholders, authorize key actions, distribute internal and external communications, and ensure the appropriate media spokesperson representing the organization is informed.  While these are the main responsibilities of the Team Leader it is also just as important for them to take a minute and remember these five key ideas:

1. Take a Moment to Figure out what’s Going On. Redirect nervous chatter from team members into constructive tasks. It is important to delegate responsibilities and follow up with a status briefing on a regular basis. By giving specific directions, this will decrease the chaos of the situation.

2. Act Promptly. Not to be confused with acting in a hurry. Respond to the situation in a timely manner, but if you, the leader, act in a hurry it will only cause team members to be nervous.

3. Manage Expectations. It is your responsibility to determine the size and scope of the crisis. Pause and gather your thoughts before you explain the situation and follow up with what is being done to remedy the current situation.

4. Demonstrate Control. Even though you have no control over the event that has occurred, you do have control over the response.

5. Keep Loose. Your first response may not be your final response. It is imperative to continue to take in information, carefully listen and to discuss the conditions with frontline experts who are knowledgeable about the situation.

Michael Herrera is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of MHA. In his role, Michael provides global leadership to the entire set of industry practices and horizontal capabilities within MHA. Under his leadership, MHA has become a leading provider of Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery services to organizations on a global level. He is also the founder of BCMMETRICS, a leading cloud based tool designed to assess business continuity compliance and residual risk. Michael is a well-known and sought after speaker on Business Continuity issues at local and national contingency planner chapter meetings and conferences. Prior to founding MHA, he was a Regional VP for Bank of America, where he was responsible for Business Continuity across the southwest region.


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