Today is June 12, 2020 and my email box is flooded with questions about branding and communicating during a crisis. As of today we have several to pick from. Organizations worried about saying the wrong thing, about their words being mixed up, about 30 year old rules hunting them, about offending the wrong people, about hushing their employees, about taking a stand versus not taking a stand… The list goes on and on. My response has been pretty consistent, with some minor adjustments based on the organization.
- Be Authentic. If you already care about something, demonstrate that you already care. If you didn’t care, but realize you should (not motivated by fear of course), start caring now.
- Be Transparent. Hiding what isn’t right or poorly done only leads to more problems. Also be transparent in being solution driven.
- Have Tough Conversations. People want to know that you hear and see them and be validated. Be willing to have the conversations that will lead to making a difference.
- Be Factual. Don’t make a messy situation worse. Come from a place of facts and truth.
- Ask For Help. Its OK to not get it right, its not ok to keep it wrong.
- Provide A Safe Place. Be the leader in providing a safe place for others to share and learn and grow. Hiding is not an option.