As well as determining our business continuity strategies, there are several key issues that we should consider at the planning stage, particularly with regard to our crisis/incident management plans. They’ve been mentioned in one form or another in previous tips, but here’s a reminder, along with a few links to some of those tips, in case you missed them first time around or would like to refresh your memory.
1. People. : All those directly involved are likely to be affected in some way, some more seriously than others. Recognising this will enable us to do some pre-planning to enable us to help those who need it (see ‘Keeping one’s own counsel‘ and ‘Personnel responsibility’);
2. Communication : We need to consider appropriate communications channels and messages for all of our stakeholders, both internal and external (see ‘The big issue‘ and ‘It ain’t what you do, it’s the way that you say it‘)
3. Information management : Thinking through how we can obtain, validate and make best use of available information in advance will pay dividends post-incident (see ‘Questioning the answers‘ and ‘The wheat from the chaff’), as will considering how a lack of accurate information might affect our decision-making (see ‘The information gap‘ and ‘Questions, questions‘;
4. Focus on priorities : It’s all too easy to get distracted and side-tracked into things that aren’t that critical. So we need clear priorities and direction to ensure we focus on what’s really important (see ‘The main thing‘)
5. Event/decision logging : Not always given the attention it deserves, but this is an essential activity, particularly if you find yourself having to justify your actions or decisions after the event. (see ‘Log it or lose it‘ and ‘What’s the story’).