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Don’t Panic: 6 Things to Do During a Crisis

March 28, 2023

Sometimes, experiencing a crisis in a business setting is simply unavoidable. Whether it’s an unhappy client, a merchandise recall, or data leak, it can be difficult to stay calm and level-headed in the heat of the moment. Luckily, there are ways to plan and be ready for situations like these as they come. When a crisis shows up, take a deep breath … and stick to these 6 key things to do during a crisis.

6 Things to Do During a Crisis for the Most Effective Response

1. Remember Your Crisis Plan

First things first: utilize your crisis plan. There’s a reason you have one. Whether it be in a binder on your shelf, or in a document on your computer, read it over. Begin to let yourself calm down – remember, you planned for this exact moment. It’s time to bring your crisis plan into action.

2. Bring Employees Into the Plan

A major part of business is the relationships that come with it. Your employees are expected to be loyal to you as well as supportive. Communicating the crisis to them in person will not only keep everyone in the loop, but also provide them with them an opportunity to help or provide support where it’s needed. Moreover, hearing the crisis news from you first rather than an outside source should only increase their respect for you as a leader.

3. Accept and Embrace the Issue

Now that there’s dust in the air, the worst thing you can possibly do is try to wave it away. By living in a state of denial, you would be giving up any control you initially had over the situation. Instead, choose to embrace the crisis and accept it for what it is. It’s not fun. However, you can strive to create the best possible outcome from the situation.

4. Remember Who You Are

It is human nature to feel flustered in the heat of the moment. This can lead to unhealthy responses, such as lying or twisting the truth to make things look better than they really are. Honesty is always the best policy, especially during a high-pressure time. Staying open with the people involved in your situation will only reassure them that you are willing to cooperate and fix the issue. You don’t have to put on a mask to deal with the crisis. For that reason, keep your normal, open attitude when interacting with clients and employees. Lashing out because of stress will only add to the list of negative things you need to deal with.

5. Document Everything

One of the smartest things to do in a crisis is keeping a record of everything that happens – all the way back to the initial incident.

  • Document your first statement
  • Make a list of employees who served as a crisis response team
  • Save all emails or texts that may relate to the situation

This way, you should have everything organized and easy to find if you need it to help resolve the crisis. You can also study this documentation in the future to perfect your crisis plan for its next use.

6. Reach Out to Your PR Firm

In high-pressure moments like these, a public relations firm can be the missing puzzle piece. A critical part of a PR professional’s job is managing sudden, unavoidable situations. If your business doesn’t have a PR firm on standby, look no further. Founded in 1993, Kessler PR Group is the region’s top public relations firm. Crisis communication is our comfort zone, and it would be our pleasure to work with you. Call us today at 888-825-0892 to begin your crisis resolving process with our firm by your side every step of the way.

 

Kessler PR Group is a leading public relations firm specializing in crisis communications, reputation management, litigation support and media relations. To learn more, please visit https://kesslerpr.com, call 908-322-1100 or email info@kesslerpr.com.

OUR TEAM

Experienced. Collaborative. Responsive. Committed. Knowledgeable. Creative.

Led by acclaimed crisis communication strategist Karen Kessler, our team brings skills, knowledge, and experience from a winning mix of professional backgrounds to best serve our clients’ needs. Kessler PR Group’s collaborative approach means you get the whole team. Everyone on our team is familiar with every client and the issue at hand.

Karen Kesseler - Kessler PR

Karen Kessler

kkessler@kesslerpr.com

Karen regularly counsels clients on sensitive issues including regulatory inquiries, personnel matters, business practices and criminal and civil litigation. She represents high profile celebrities and entities in the USA, Europe and the Middle East. She is known for her discretion, her integrity, and her decades-long relationships with media leaders.

Karen is a frequent keynote speaker on topics ranging from reputation, career, leadership and moving beyond cancel culture. A reliably provocative commenter on reputation issues for print and broadcast, Karen has served as an on-air reputation consultant to the “NBC TODAY SHOW” and others. Her work has been the basis of both feature and documentary films.

Karen has served on Boards of Directors of public companies and leading not-for-profits in finance, health care and education. She and her work have received dozens of awards from local, regional and national organizations.

Early in her career, Karen served as the Vice President of Corporate Communications for the American Stock Exchange. She was the Director of Transition for New Jersey Governor-Elect Jim Florio and the first female commissioner of the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority. She earned an AB in economics from Vassar College.

Karen Kessler

Karen Kessler

kkessler@kesslerpr.com

Karen regularly counsels clients on sensitive issues including regulatory inquiries, personnel matters, business practices and criminal and civil litigation. She represents high profile celebrities and entities in the USA, Europe and the Middle East. She is known for her discretion, her integrity, and her decades-long relationships with media leaders.

Karen is a frequent keynote speaker on topics ranging from reputation, career, leadership and moving beyond cancel culture. A reliably provocative commenter on reputation issues for print and broadcast, Karen has served as an on-air reputation consultant to the “NBC TODAY SHOW” and others. Her work has been the basis of both feature and documentary films.

Karen has served on Boards of Directors of public companies and leading not-for-profits in finance, health care and education. She and her work have received dozens of awards from local, regional and national organizations.

Early in her career, Karen served as the Vice President of Corporate Communications for the American Stock Exchange. She was the Director of Transition for New Jersey Governor-Elect Jim Florio and the first female commissioner of the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority. She earned an AB in economics from Vassar College.

Warren Cooper - Kessler PR

Warren Cooper

wcooper@kesslerpr.com

Warren provides strategic communication counsel and litigation support to clients facing personal or institutional crises.

He has provided media training to clients facing the glare of public scrutiny; written political speeches, university commencement addresses, and policy presentations for a variety of speakers and audiences; drafted media statements for corporate and outside counsel to align with and bolster litigation strategy and crafted traditional and social media messaging to support political and policy campaigns.

In advising clients, Warren draws on his years as an investigative reporter, as well as his own experience handling media as a New Jersey mayor and school board president. Warren earned a doctoral degree in psychology at Rutgers University and a BA in English at Binghamton University. He has taught psychology at Rutgers and journalism and communications at Raritan Valley Community College.

Warren Cooper

Warren Cooper

wcooper@kesslerpr.com

Warren provides strategic communication counsel and litigation support to clients facing personal or institutional crises.

He has provided media training to clients facing the glare of public scrutiny; written political speeches, university commencement addresses, and policy presentations for a variety of speakers and audiences; drafted media statements for corporate and outside counsel to align with and bolster litigation strategy and crafted traditional and social media messaging to support political and policy campaigns.

In advising clients, Warren draws on his years as an investigative reporter, as well as his own experience handling media as a New Jersey mayor and school board president. Warren earned a doctoral degree in psychology at Rutgers University and a BA in English at Binghamton University. He has taught psychology at Rutgers and journalism and communications at Raritan Valley Community College.

Warren Cooper - Kessler PR

Donna Elliott

delliott@kesslerpr.com

As the initial point of contact for Kessler PR clients, Donna Elliott draws on her background as a broadcast news writer, editor, and producer for a New Jersey-based media company to conduct client research with confidentiality and sensitivity. Her earlier work supporting C-suite executives enables her to develop strong relationships with attorneys, their clients and other engaged stakeholders, coordinating calendars and managing onsite, remote and hybrid meetings.

Donna seeks to boost client trust and confidence, approaching business operations to help clients achieve their reputational goals. Donna’s focus on enhancing the client experience throughout her career has enabled her to use data collection, assessment and analysis to recommend and execute process improvements at a New Jersey energy company and cultivate partnerships for an international, enterprise-level staffing solutions company.

Donna Elliott

Donna Elliott

delliott@kesslerpr.com

As the initial point of contact for Kessler PR clients, Donna Elliott draws on her background as a broadcast news writer, editor, and producer for a New Jersey-based media company to conduct client research with confidentiality and sensitivity. Her earlier work supporting C-suite executives enables her to develop strong relationships with attorneys, their clients and other engaged stakeholders, coordinating calendars and managing onsite, remote and hybrid meetings.

Donna seeks to boost client trust and confidence, approaching business operations to help clients achieve their reputational goals. Donna’s focus on enhancing the client experience throughout her career has enabled her to use data collection, assessment and analysis to recommend and execute process improvements at a New Jersey energy company and cultivate partnerships for an international, enterprise-level staffing solutions company.

Erin Friedlander Kessler PR

Erin Friedlander

efriedlander@kesslerpr.com

Erin develops and executes customized communication strategies for clients. She has represented many high-profile individuals and organizations during her career and has extensive experience in working with leaders of education, healthcare, not-for-profit, and religious organizations.

In addition to helping clients generate greater public awareness and visibility for their brand, Erin often works with clients who seek to avoid or respond to reputational fallout when faced with media or public scrutiny. She regularly provides public relations and litigation support for clients engaged in complex matters including, but not limited to personnel issues, leadership transitions, mergers, acquisitions, and bankruptcies.

Prior to joining Kessler PR Group, Erin served as communications director and media spokesperson for a prominent religious nonprofit organization in Central New Jersey.

Early in her career, Erin worked for a public and government relations firm in Trenton, where she led multiple strategic public relations, marketing and grassroots campaigns, special events, and communications initiatives for corporate, small business, New Jersey Department of State and not-for-profit clients. Erin earned her BA in Communications at Rider University.

Erin Friedlander

Erin Friedlander

efriedlander@kesslerpr.com

Erin develops and executes customized communication strategies for clients. She has represented many high-profile individuals and organizations during her career and has extensive experience in working with leaders of education, healthcare, not-for-profit, and religious organizations.

In addition to helping clients generate greater public awareness and visibility for their brand, Erin often works with clients who seek to avoid or respond to reputational fallout when faced with media or public scrutiny. She regularly provides public relations and litigation support for clients engaged in complex matters including, but not limited to personnel issues, leadership transitions, mergers, acquisitions, and bankruptcies.

Prior to joining Kessler PR Group, Erin served as communications director and media spokesperson for a prominent religious nonprofit organization in Central New Jersey.

Early in her career, Erin worked for a public and government relations firm in Trenton, where she led multiple strategic public relations, marketing and grassroots campaigns, special events, and communications initiatives for corporate, small business, New Jersey Department of State and not-for-profit clients. Erin earned her BA in Communications at Rider University.

Kevin Israel Kessler PR

Kevin Israel

kisrael@kesslerpr.com

Kevin provides communications guidance and messaging support to a wide variety of clients, including those in the healthcare field, construction professionals, and the entertainment industry. He has overseen event planning and helped produce major televised events.

Prior to joining Kessler PR Group Kevin served as public relations manager for a major New Jersey health system, directed the New Jersey Department of Transportation’s Office of Community and Constituent Services, and served as chief of staff for state elected officials in New Jersey’s 13th Legislative District.

Kevin’s legal and legislative background combined with his transportation and health care experience make him uniquely qualified to service a wide variety of clients. He has worked on high profile issues throughout the NY/NJ region and provided messaging strategies to governors, legislative leaders, and corporate executives.

Kevin earned his BA from the University of Delaware and his JD from Hofstra University School of Law.

Kevin Israel

Kevin Israel

kisrael@kesslerpr.com

Kevin provides communications guidance and messaging support to a wide variety of clients, including those in the healthcare field, construction professionals, and the entertainment industry. He has overseen event planning and helped produce major televised events.

Prior to joining Kessler PR Group Kevin served as public relations manager for a major New Jersey health system, directed the New Jersey Department of Transportation’s Office of Community and Constituent Services, and served as chief of staff for state elected officials in New Jersey’s 13th Legislative District.

Kevin’s legal and legislative background combined with his transportation and health care experience make him uniquely qualified to service a wide variety of clients. He has worked on high profile issues throughout the NY/NJ region and provided messaging strategies to governors, legislative leaders, and corporate executives.

Kevin earned his BA from the University of Delaware and his JD from Hofstra University School of Law.

Andria Lykogiannis- Kessler PR

Andria Lykogiannis

alykogiannis@kesslerpr.com

Andria Lykogiannis serves as principal client liaison, supporting client research and managing the scheduling, coordination and implementation of multiple projects. Her background in broadcast media production and business management enhances the critical support for client services aimed at achieving reputational goals.

Andria’s background and experience as a network television technician and editor for ABC and CBS included work on the Republican and Democratic national conventions, the Superbowl, Olympic Games, the CBS Evening News, the Detroit Grand Prix, NFL Football and NCAA Basketball to name a few. In addition, Lykogiannis owned and operated a successful franchise restaurant and catering business.

Andria Lykogiannis

Andria Lykogiannis

alykogiannis@kesslerpr.com

Andria Lykogiannis serves as principal client liaison, supporting client research and managing the scheduling, coordination and implementation of multiple projects. Her background in broadcast media production and business management enhances the critical support for client services aimed at achieving reputational goals.

Andria’s background and experience as a network television technician and editor for ABC and CBS included work on the Republican and Democratic national conventions, the Superbowl, Olympic Games, the CBS Evening News, the Detroit Grand Prix, NFL Football and NCAA Basketball to name a few. In addition, Lykogiannis owned and operated a successful franchise restaurant and catering business.

Brian McDonough Kessler PR

Brian McDonough, Esq.

bmcdonough@kesslerpr.com

Brian utilizes his legal experience to provide strategic crisis communications counsel and litigation support to clients confronted with complex and high-profile matters. He has developed successful communications strategies for corporations; not-for-profits; C-suite executive; professional sports teams, and educational institutions, and has drafted crisis communications plans for large hospital networks and universities.

Brian practiced law before joining Kessler PR Group. He has defended insurers and corporations in employment and mass tort cases, as well law firms and hospitals in legal and medical malpractice actions. Brian’s legal background, robust research skills, and strong writing underpin Kessler’s work on behalf of clients who seek to establish themselves as industry thought leaders or transform and enhance their public image.

Brian earned his JD at Seton Hall University School of Law and his BA in Law & Policy at Dickinson College.

Brian McDonough, Esq

Brian McDonough, Esq.

bmcdonough@kesslerpr.com

Brian utilizes his legal experience to provide strategic crisis communications counsel and litigation support to clients confronted with complex and high-profile matters. He has developed successful communications strategies for corporations; not-for-profits; C-suite executive; professional sports teams, and educational institutions, and has drafted crisis communications plans for large hospital networks and universities.

Brian practiced law before joining Kessler PR Group. He has defended insurers and corporations in employment and mass tort cases, as well law firms and hospitals in legal and medical malpractice actions. Brian’s legal background, robust research skills, and strong writing underpin Kessler’s work on behalf of clients who seek to establish themselves as industry thought leaders or transform and enhance their public image.

Brian earned his JD at Seton Hall University School of Law and his BA in Law & Policy at Dickinson College.

Allison Perrine

Allison Perrine Bio

aperrine@kesslerpr.com

Allison utilizes her background in journalism to counsel clients through a variety of media-related needs. She provides media training, conducts research, and drafts statements and speeches for organizations to lean on during times of crisis. Additionally, Allison designs graphics and websites for our clients to help raise awareness of their brands.

Prior to joining Kessler PR Group, Allison served as the senior reporter for a local newspaper in Monmouth County. There, she maintained relationships with community and political leaders and produced balanced articles by maintaining sources with confidentiality and respect.

Earlier in her career, Allison worked on public relations campaigns for New Jersey-based nonprofits and helped promote small businesses in her community. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications at Monmouth University.

Allison Perrine

Allison Perrine Bio

aperrine@kesslerpr.com

Allison utilizes her background in journalism to counsel clients through a variety of media-related needs. She provides media training, conducts research, and drafts statements and speeches for organizations to lean on during times of crisis. Additionally, Allison designs graphics and websites for our clients to help raise awareness of their brands.

Prior to joining Kessler PR Group, Allison served as the senior reporter for a local newspaper in Monmouth County. There, she maintained relationships with community and political leaders and produced balanced articles by maintaining sources with confidentiality and respect.

Earlier in her career, Allison worked on public relations campaigns for New Jersey-based nonprofits and helped promote small businesses in her community. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications at Monmouth University.