advice on how to build meaningful brands

March 08, 2018

20 | What to do in times of crisis – with Scott Crockatt

Why you’ve got to listen to this episode:

Finding yourself in a crisis is a matter of when not if.

Be it a natural disaster, a severe storm, hurricane, flood or fire, to a man-made “disaster”, lash back in social media, cyberattack, unreliable service or an accusation of misconduct. You are open and at risk to go through one of these types of crisis at any given time. Are you prepared? Do you know what to do and how to handle the situation?

It is very likely that you’ll face one or more of these types of crisis, and it can make or break an organization. How you come out of a crisis depends greatly on the health of the organization (financial and brand) and how you handle the crisis.

Today’s episode is a must listen to any organization, big or small, for-profit or not. Knowing what to do and being prepared to handle a crisis when it hits, can make a big difference.

Scott Crockatt, the Director of Marketing and Communications at the Calgary Chamber of Commerce and a member of the Canada Task Force 2 Disaster Response Team, shares with us some practical advice on how to prepare for a crisis and come out stronger.

Who can benefit from listening in:

Today’s episode is really for anyone as you never know when disaster hits who may be in a position to have to handle that crisis and become the voice of the organization but if you are the leader of your organization, part of the executive team or the head of communications don’t miss this episode.

Scott Crockatt, shares with us some practical advice on how to prepare for a crisis, what to do during a crisis and what to think about and do after, once the dust settles.

Key takeaways from this episode:

  • During a crisis your communication is “high risk and high intensity”. Meaning everything you say is highly scrutinized and judged. What and how you communicate is critical.
  • The smaller the organization, the higher risk you have. Depending on the severity, many organizations don’t survive a crisis or come out severely damaged.
  • Perception is reality. Even if the accusations are undeserved or untrue during a communication crisis what is important is not about proving innocence or justifying your actions, but how you handle the accusations.
  • How you react to a crisis is what you can control and that’s what matters. That’s how you will be judged and how your audience will evaluate if they will continue to engage with you or not.
  • During crisis communication, it is crucial that you show genuine concern and willingness to correct or repair any damage done.
  • “Your brand is a reservoir of goodwill”, says Scott Crockatt. The stronger your brand the more goodwill you’ll have and the more likely it is for your audience to support you or forgive you.

Links to resources mentioned in this episode

a branded world is a member of the Alberta Podcast Network powered by ATB

Episode supplement

Scott Crockatt had provided us with a link to better prepare for a crisis, however, as of 2021, this link no longer exists. We apologize for the inconvenience. An alternative source is this article from Harvard Business Review, “How to Prepare for a Crisis You Couldn’t possibly Predict“.

Thanks for listening

To share your thoughts

Don’t forget to subscribe on Apple Podcasts.


SUBSCRIBEFor brand and marketing tips, trends and other information sign up to our blog.