One of the striking reactions to the crisis from many organisations has been to do nothing. Even for the most challenged of organisations this is not a viable option. In fact, an article in the Harvard Business Review shows that those who try to cut their way out of a crisis/recession perform worst after it. The need for progressive action is perhaps best summed up by a quote from Helen Keller, who understood isolation better than most. She said: "A bend in the road is not the end of the road unless you fail to make the turn." So, it’s essential for organisations to focus on how to emerge stronger from the crisis. My advice is to communicate in a way that forges tighter emotional bonds with your employees and your customers. 

This needs to start with a Purpose that is shared with these key audiences. And then you need to bring that to life in campaigns that are targeted at the three stages of our new COVID-19 world: life with COVID-19; life alongside COVID-19 (the period without a viable vaccine) and the life after COVID-19. In all three phases it’s vital to understand the psyche and behaviour of employees and customers. And then find ways to add value to their world. 

The objectives for these campaigns are to remain or become relevant: to instill belief that you can meet their needs and, to trigger the action you want them to take. So, don’t be put off if you can’t see the action happening today. Build the emotional bonds of belief so that it’s certain to happen tomorrow. The organisations that do this now will emerge stronger from the crisis. 

CLM head and shoulders web

Crispin Manners is Chairman & CEO of Onva, a partner agency of the Worldcom Public Relations Group

Twitter: @crispinluke

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/crispinmanners/

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Website: https://onva.co.uk/ 

Twitter: @OnvaWOM 

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/company/onva/  

 


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