Communication and Crisis
May 25, 2015
Communication and Crisis
A crisis can occur at any given time and anywhere around us. One of the most important details during a crisis is communication. As a key member of this organization, The Padre Emergency Management Office, it is imperative to develop a plan for communication during a crisis. There will be challenges associated with such communications, but none the less, it is imperative. Communication is a key concept to success (du Pré, 2005). There are many different processes to communicating during a crisis, each important in its own way; still it is best to address them all. A variety of different technologies can aid you in communicating when a crisis occurs. Technology can also be used differently when a crisis is expected to occur, regardless of whether it happens or not. At this point, we have received official reports that the public water supplies of several towns in the area have become contaminated. The situation appears to be forming into a crisis, and we must be prepared. According to Fearn-Banks, and Hooper (2006), “Crisis communication found itself a home in the profession of public relations and includes campaigns for crisis prevention and preparation” (para. 1). There will be a team, who was previously selected, to be a part of the Crisis Communications Team. The team members have all agreed to participate in both internal and public communications. We selected each member for a variety of different reasons. You would be pleased to know that the Mayor of Padre and the Principle of our High School are both members of this team. We are also fortunate to have acquired the help from the Johnson Group, who have supplied us with a crisis trainer. First on the agenda is Mayor Garza, who will address all employees in regards to the rumors that are at hand. The mayor is a trusted official who has lived in our town for all of his life. He and his family still live in Padre, and this should put employees at ease. The Mayor is partaking in crisis communication training from the Johnson Group. He will learn what is the best way to address a crisis. The principal of the local high school is very well respected, and even feared by many. He has a reputation for being strong and has the physique to match. It is good to have such stability during a time of crisis. With the stability of the Mayor, combined with the respect of the principle, there should be little to no rebuttal to our communicating with the staff and the public. The only challenge I foresee is communicating with people we are not familiar with the community members. Most locals will honor what we say, but the neighboring cities may not feel the same way. There is an array of communication processes that may be used during a crisis situation such as this. Speaking to a large number of citizens all at the same time is one of the communications methods used during a crisis. Stadiums, arenas, or venues of such sort are prone to draw a large number of people (Craig, Olaniran, Scholl, & Williams, (2006). During a crisis, people tend to swarm to such locations. The stability of the buildings and locations reassure people of their safety. Public figures can then make statements and inform citizens of all types of information. Another form of communication during a crisis is emergency communication. Such efforts made through 911 calls, emergency alert systems, and radio stations are all effective methods of communication during a crisis. During this tragic time, I have learned that a plan is needed. It is better to have a plan for the communication process at all times, regardless of the situation. I can utilize this information that I have learned into the health care communication process by always strategizing and planning. I see now that if you take the time and coordinate a plan, you will remain calm and collected among all the chaos that may occur. There is...
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