Creating a Crisis Management Plan
There's no doubt that the unexpected can happen at any time. Stories and images of school shootings, hurricanes and floods, disease pandemics, workplace violence, terror attacks and more fill the news. These tragedies can happen anywhere - at home or at work. But as difficult as it is to imagine what you would do if faced with a crisis on the job, it's even worse to be caught in the middle of one with no plan for what to do. That's why creating a workplace crisis plan is vital for any business owner.
Since it's safety month, set aside some time during June to ensure the safety of your workforce and the future of your business by creating a workplace crisis plan. Here are some guidelines to consider when you create your plan.
Consider every potential scenario. Depending on your region, industry and work environment, each workplace will have different possible crisis scenarios. For example, costal regions should plan for hurricane threats. Industrial plants should establish guidelines for serious workplace injuries, plant fires or chemical leaks. The first step in establishing a comprehensive crisis plan is to seriously consider each potential issue that could arise. Then, you can create one comprehensive plan that will list special considerations for each potential crisis scenario.
Cover the basics. According to the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the essential elements for any business's emergency management plan include the following:
Communicate your plan. The best crisis plans are those everyone in your workplace is aware of, from top management to first-day employees. Make sure everyone at your workplace has access to emergency planning details that are pertinent to their role. Regularly train employees who have specific roles in the crisis management process, and routinely update your plan to deal with turnover of roles, new potential issues and updated policies and procedures.
Planning ahead for a crisis may seem like a daunting, thankless task, but you'll rest easier when you've done your best to prepare for the worst.
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