Prepare your business for an unforeseen crisis situation with construction public relations
A crisis is any situation that threatens the integrity or reputation of your construction business. It is usually brought on by adverse or negative media attention.
Five examples of potential crisis situations that could damage your reputation if it is not handled correctly are:
- An accident occurs where a piece of material or equipment strikes someone resulting in serious injury or death. The media finds out about it and wants to do a story about the incident.
- Part of an office building was constructed improperly resulting in engineering issues after completion. This causes delays and unhappiness of all tenants and business owners scheduled to move into their new office spaces. They contact the media to help find out what the real reason for the delay is.
- Factions in the neighboring community are against the development of a commercial building you are working on and decide to protest the construction. The protest gets a lot a media attention. Photos and video content of the construction site appear on various media platforms and protestors refuse to leave the construction site.
- The developer of the property goes bankrupt in the middle of construction and the media wants to know why there is no progress.
- The ex-girlfriend of an employee comes onto the construction site and threatens everybody with a gun. The police get involved and issue a statement to the media.
A business must be able to respond promptly and accurately to any of these situations. In order to take control of the story, construction public relations plays a vital role. It is crucial to communicate as quickly as possible with everyone affected by the situation. This includes communicating with the media, employees, government officials, business partners and more. An effective construction public relations strategy will help to minimize the negative impact of an incident on the public perception of the company.
According to ready.gov:
When an emergency occurs, the need to communicate is immediate. If business operations are disrupted, customers will want to know how they will be impacted. Regulators may need to be notified and local government officials will want to know what is going on in their community. Employees and their families will be concerned and want information. Neighbors living near the facility may need information—especially if they are threatened by the incident. All of these “audiences” will want information before the business has a chance to begin communicating.
An important component of the preparedness program is the crisis communications plan. A business must be able to respond promptly, accurately and confidently during an emergency in the hours and days that follow. Many different audiences must be reached with information specific to their interests and needs. The image of the business can be positively or negatively impacted by public perceptions of the handling of the incident.
To find out more about how you can best prepare your business for an unforeseen crisis situation, contact the crisis communication experts at Ripley PR today.
This post was written by Celeste Vlok, Senior Brand Manager on May 25, 2017