How Manufacturing Executives Should Effectively Communicate During a Crisis

The days of “no comment,” communication, and lack of transparency rarely work very long for any executive today.

Today, employees, suppliers, and / or local communities via social media put manufacturers in the spotlight with negative news.

Before a crisis gets out of hand, I suggest you sit down with 2-3 vital team members and hash out what your message will be. Don’t involve more than 2-3 people because just like in a kitchen with too many cooks— they spoil the broth.

Most importantly, your message needs to be honest and provide enough information to convince your employees, vendors, and customers. It must convey that you genuinely understand the situation and have a plan for moving forward.

Next, brainstorm on what questions you might get from all fronts. Come up with at least one solid reply.

Next, start making phone calls to key individuals that have a significant stake in your company and relay the message. Be prepared to answer questions they might have because they will have concerns.

Then email the message to all of your other stakeholders, such as employees, vendors, and suppliers.

If the crisis continues—do it all over again.

Bottom line—communicate quickly, honestly, and often.

I have over 15 years of experience helping companies craft the right message for the press, employees and vendors. Let me know if I can help you put a message together for your and your company.