Crisis Communication Objectives

Objectives for crisis PR activities tend to be of an impact nature. The general guidelines are:

  1. to provide accurate, timely information to all targeted internal and external audiences
  2. to demonstrate concern for the safety of lives
  3. to safeguard organizational facilities and assets
  4. to maintain a positive image of the organization as a good corporate or community citizen

Threat, surprise, short response time, and uncertainty could affect decision making and communication activities after a crisis. To manage a crisis situation effectively, organizations should not respond with routine solutions. PR professionals should communicate early and often following a crisis, regardless of whether or not they have critical information about the crisis. Due to the unexpected nature of crisis, stakeholders need information about what had just happened. Furthermore, stakeholders want to know what is being done to protect them from similar crises in the future. Corrective actions reassure stakeholders that they are safe thereby reducing their psychological stress.

For example, when a manufacturing company faces allegations and media inquiries relating to defective products that caused bodily injuries to consumers, the objectives of crisis communication activities should be:

The company should demonstrate good will, sincerity, and willingness to cooperate with government investigation, and show efforts to preserve company reputation by emphasizing its core values and integrity when the public might have doubts about the products of the company.

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