Using crisis management techniques during personal challenges

Jim Moorhead just wrote a book about applying techniques and maxims he learned and used for corporate crisis management clients to individual crisis situations. These could be a serious disease, job loss, divorce or similar individual catastrophe.

His book, The Instant Survivor, flows through a series of snippets, personal stories and suggested remedies. I came away from a brief review feeling the book offered useful solutions and earnest advice.

Moorhead’s theme is valid. Many of the rules and experiences of successful corporate crisis management will help people with individual challenges.

As I read through the book, I realized that much of what he writes about applied to me during a recent family member crisis.

First, I tried to ascertain the facts. Then I made a list of those facts and related ones. As Moorhead writes, you must deal with facts and be frank with your client, or yourself.

Next I sought out friends who could help me understand this crisis and summon strategies that in the thick of my worries remained unseen or undiscovered.

I worked fast, as events still unfolded and their outcome remained uncertain. I made several lists, all of them useful when a crisis peaks in a meeting or showdown. When emotion takes over, a list of facts and calm observations is invaluable and often most productive.

Moorhead’s is a self-help book. Everyone has a personal crisis now and then and would surely gain from the fresh ideas in the book. He deserves credit for seeing that many of the same macro rules and techniques apply in the micro.

While we’re describing useful works in the crisis management arena, this arrived about a former EMA expert, Esther Campi.

Embrace the Pain: The First Rule of Crisis Communications | How To Lead in Womenetics.

Campi, adviser to top leaders from Fortune 500 CEOs to U.S. senators, offers a from-the-trenches-insight into crisis communication. She says leaders must embrace the pain that comes with crisis. And communicate your commitment to doing the right thing, using her ‘head, heart, hands’ approach.

From crises, to public affairs, to high-stakes communications with your board of directors, major investors and customers, Campi & Company can help. See its full list of services at – along with endorsements from top Fortune 100 CEOs.

In the world of social media, video and rumor enhancement we live and work in, there can’t be enough crisis managers. But more important is what you do with us, how you plan for the inevitable crisis that will strike, either personally or professionally, when you least expect it. Get a plan in place now.


About steveoncrisis

The content is about crisis management and mismanagement in a digital age. It comes from Steve Bell, who spent 30 years as a journalist for the Associated Press and as managing editor and editorial page editor at The Buffalo News. He is now Partner/Director of Public Affairs at Eric Mower and Associates, one of the nation's largest independent advertising, integrated marketing and public relations agency with six offices in the Northeast and Southeast.
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