Crisis Communication: What to Say When You Just Don’t Know What to Say

In our Spring District Faculty meeting “Crisis Communication” was one of the topics addressed.  Sometimes, in 4-H,  things happen. Whether you call these things hurdles, bumps, challenges or crises, it matters not; what does matter is that you are aware that at some point in your career something will arise which you will have to address with 4-H members, volunteers, and/or stakeholders.  At that time you will need to have a plan of action, and take action on your plan.

While I don’t claim to be the expert, there are some experts out there.  Two brief articles which I encourage you to peruse are:

The Ten Steps of Crisis Communication
In this article I appreciate the authors’ point that stakeholders will quickly become frustrated when they don’t hear from you.  The reality is that often you may have no information you can give them, and thus the importance of sharing a “holding statement” referenced in this article.

–and–

Communicating When You Don’t Have all the Answers
In this article replace the word “employees” for “volunteers”.  Remember that your volunteers are an important part of your crisis communications team.  They are going to connect with people in your community that you will never otherwise reach.  It is important that you arm these volunteers with the type of communication you want them sharing.  Because…they…will…share.

Have a fantastic… crisis free… week!  🙂

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