I'm often asked what I would do if my business were to hit a crisis. Now, my question to them is which crisis they would be referring to (just joking!). But seriously, folks, every business will have a crisis sooner or later; it's just a matter of when. But what matters more is how you will handle it.
You know that I love to make lists, so I've compiled a list of steps of how to deal with a crisis when your business inevitably has one.
- Identifying the Crisis: Proper identification of the crisis is an important initial step. The crisis could be of a financial or strategic nature. A communication crisis, due to negative publicity of your company, may also affect your company's success.
- Searching for Possible Solutions to the Crisis: Critical assessment of the probable causes of the crisis will help you to resolve the problem better and quicker. A short-term financial crisis may be due to cash flow problems, whereas a long-term financial crisis may be the result of bankruptcy. Reach out to professionals, companies, banks and other sources for immediate relief.
- Breaking Down the Problem: It is ideal for you to be able to identify a bad situation and deal with it efficiently.
- Resolving the Problem: The crisis management team of your business (even if it is just you!) should strive to resolve a problem as fast as possible. This involves sincere commitment, active participation and a professional approach. You should update employees, clients, investors and customers about the situation on a need-to-know basis.
- Investigation of the Root Cause and Incorporation of Corrective Measures: This means that you need to identify the root cause of the problem and the possibility of recurrence in the future. Equally important is to carefully and methodically incorporate the crisis management approach.
By knowing what steps to take in the event a crisis occurs in your business, you'll be better prepared to deal with it and keep your business afloat.