Crisis Communication

Crisis Communication

Crisis communication aims to protect a person, a company or even a community that is facing or is at risk of facing a conflictual situation, as a result of which the reputation of said person might be affected.

Crises can be financial, operational, personal, caused by technology or a natural disaster. The entity whose reputation needs to be protected may be the one who caused the crisis or may be involuntarily involved or become collateral damage.

Situations vary and can be complex. No crisis is like another, but the truth is that any company, regardless of size or field in which it operates, can be affected by a crisis.

The continuous development of communication media and, therefore, the speed by which information is shared, no longer allow the no comment or we are waiting for it to pass approach. Stakeholders, from press to employees, buyers or investors, can no longer be fooled this way. There is a need for fast, accurate and transparent communication from companies affected by a crisis.

Crisis communication is not an easy task to manage, which is why choosing professionals with relevant experience, such as SPIA, is particularly important.

The experience acquired over the years has indicated that, in a complex situation, such as the one which requires the services of a private investigation agency, the design and integration of a crisis communication plan into the action plan is a mandatory need, not just a recommendation.

The factors that financially harm a company have a real chance of tarnishing its public image and its reputation, be it illegal groups or disparate actions, but with consequences on several levels and in the long run. The company going through the crisis must avoid the risk of being turned, from a positive character, into a negative one, at the level of perception among stakeholders. In addition, public pressure can influence the general perception of the case.

Crisis communication scenarios and strategy are constantly being developed and adjusted during the 3 stages – before, during and after the crisis communication, depending on the results obtained in the private investigation process.

Our main goal is that the management of communication during the crisis remains under the control of the client. SPIA specialists in crisis communication can join an existing communication & PR department, as consultants, or they can act from A to Z, if the client facing the crisis does not already have partners for this purpose.

In terms of the duration, the crisis communication period may exceed the time required for the investigation, depending on the time need to legally solve the case.

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The difference between companies, all susceptible to develop at least one crisis, is given by risk awareness and their preparation for such a scenario.

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Don’t think that it can’t happen to you too. Be preventive and contact us for any inquiry.

When does the need for crisis communication arise in corporations?

A crisis situation in the company is, by definition, an unexpected event. However, there are some more common situations that can lead to large-scale crises, which require the intervention of both a private investigator and a crisis communicator. At SPIA, our specialists of both fields make a great team.

PR crises occur when sensitive information inside the company reaches the press and everyone is watching the company, including state institutions. In fact, in a corporation, most crises end up being PR crises, because the information eventually reaches the press.

Another type of crisis in corporations is the financial crisis, which affects many departments in the company, from accounting to sales. Often, the cause of the financial crisis turns out to be theft or fraud.

A legal crisis occurs when a corporation is accused of breaking the law; there may also be situations in which a company is forced to sue a customer, an employee or a partner. These situations are not pleasant at all, because they attract the disapproval of the press and potential investors. These situations can also negatively affect the trust of business partners.


When do you know you need a private investigator for crisis communication?

There are several alarm signals that indicate the beginning of a crisis within the company, at which point the correct management of messages becomes crucial. Some of these signals highlight the need for crisis communication: information about an employee’s illicit activities is leaked to the press; an employee or former employee decides to disclose sensitive or even confidential information about the company’s activity, to the press; a business partner is involved in a scandal, thus impacting the company’s reputation; databases with customer information or confidential financial data become public on the Internet; a customer files a complaint against the company or publicly denounces its activity.

A private investigation agency can provide specialised advice to handle the image crisis. Crisis communication services involve managing messages sent from the company to the outside or even taking over the communication on behalf of the company, when and where appropriate.

Of course, the best time to call in a professional investigator is not in the midst of a crisis, but before it occurs. However, for businesses that do not have an action plan on crisis communication, these warning signs are a specific call to action.


Crisis communication strategy

Certain crisis communication situations can be easily anticipated and there are various solution models for each possible scenario. A company that prepares crisis communication scripts in advance is best prepared to quickly resolve such a sensitive situation.

A private investigation agency will be able to help you understand where the company’s vulnerabilities are, what are the risks of fraud in the organization you run, what can be done in the event of a crisis caused by identified vulnerabilities, which people should manage crisis communication and how to do it.

It is always good to have a spokesperson for emergencies. A person very well prepared in advance for this role, who knows what needs to be made public, what does not and what is the whole context of the crisis. A corporate investigation agency can take over the crisis communication on behalf of the company, the specialists who team up with professional investigators with the necessary experience to manage even an ongoing image crisis.

At the end of the crisis, it is very important to analyse what happened. A crisis is an excellent opportunity to learn, to prepare and prevent future potential crises.

Unfortunately, image crises can hit any company. SPIA Romania investigators can help you assess the risks of a crisis within the company and can advise you on the necessary measures to prevent or manage the crisis situation, respectively communication during it.

Our Process

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1. Why crisis communication.

Because our investigations will reveal the truth, and the truth always tends to bother somebody. The years of experience have allowed us to understand that there are real chances that our clients might need crisis communication services, both for prevention and for managing an ongoing reputational crisis situation.

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2. Strategy. Strategies.

SPIA specialists in crisis communication will be kept up to date with the progress of information collection by the team of investigators, and will document, in turn, on the market segment in which your company operates, on the competition, social, political or media context. They will identify vulnerabilities and threats and will outline the strategy or, depending on the complexity of the case, action strategies.

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3. Implementation.

Managing communication throughout the crisis is like being at the helm of a ship in the middle of a storm. The strategy proposed and agreed together with the client is constantly implemented and monitored, in order to be adapted according to the events.

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4. Monitoring and assistance.

Crisis communication can have several stages, and this means that a communication crisis can continue long after the truth has been revealed. SPIA’s crisis communication specialists will stay with you until they make sure that thee is no danger and there are no more threats to the company’s reputation.

Ask us.