How to Handle a Business Crisis?

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Mercadeo Magazine Julio 2024

Crises generate changes, some very positive, others negative. Every large corporation has gone through a crisis at some point, and many have managed to come out successfully, but there are cases in which the situation cannot be sorted out that easily.

Uncertainty is often one of its consequences. This is because of the difficulty of knowing what is going to happen in the near future, which can overwhelm most of the personnel.

Most businesses have a turning point that is decisive in their productivity and the way they operate today. Companies such as Federal Express, Ford Motors, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Apple, Disney, and many others have been seriously affected by crises.

“You may not notice it when it happens, but a kick in the teeth may be the best thing in the world for you.” This is a famous Walt Disney quote from the time his company suffered financial problems. In the 1920s, this crisis led to the accumulation of 4 million dollars in debt, and the loss of the rights of some of his characters, like “Oswald The Lucky Rabbit.”

No business is exempt from facing financial issues, but the key is learning how to solve these events and move forward in spite of them.

Get ready before it happens!

The idea is to be prepared before the crisis even starts, taking precautions, and trying to forecast any eventuality to handle it in the best possible way. Companies that take on these situations sooner usually limit the damage by up to a third.

This way, the recovery process may take them half the time than to those who have no proper preparation. All companies capable of anticipating their problems can recover quickly and learn from them.

These experiences can’t be fully avoided, though, because of all the risks present in the workplace. But taking precautions will reduce the negative impact. It is essential to learn how to apply corrective measures and make coordinated, fast, and effective decisions.

According to Paul Remy, a recognized business consultant, there are specific tactics that contribute to making this process less traumatic.

It is all about overcoming the crisis with efficiency and professionalism to reduce the impact on daily operations. For this reason, it is necessary to:

  • Show commitment to the community, its authorities, workers, customers, suppliers, and the media.
  • Provide adequate assistance to those affected by business operations or services.
  • Provide the media with truthful information, as well as always having an honest response.
  • Maintain effective and efficient operability during the crisis, or try to recover it as soon as possible if it has been interrupted.
  • Reduce commercial and financial material damage.
  • Limit the legal responsibilities caused by the event as much as possible.

Even in difficult circumstances, the company must keep its commitment and maintain its values in the eye of the public.

As Paul Remy says in one of his books, “in spite of a crisis, which is a period that can be summed up as catastrophic and chaotic, we can handle it in an intelligent, orderly and coordinated way, especially with honesty.”

It is important never to let these situations become permanent. All we need to do is remain calm and have the emotional intelligence to not choose an easy exit or other “solutions” that may affect our company in the long term.


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