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Created on 17 July 2015 Written by Yinka Olaito
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The challenges of this age are as complex as the age itself. Online crisis has become part of what we must live with. Shrewd Community or Public Relations Manager must keep honing their skills to work out things for the organizations or brands they represent.

Let us look at the best ways to address online crisis or any other messy situations which we may confront.

Nail the source, find the motive: You cannot win a war you know nothing about. This is the reason why in military setting, strategy is essential. Strategy rests on better appreciation as well as understanding of all the enemies’ antic, resources etc.

Is the individual or group out to score cheap points? Is there any justifiable reason for this? No reason is too small to overlook. What you may consider insignificant may be very significant to the other party. Wear their shoes if they have a genuine point.

Be professional: When the water is soiled and tempers are charging high, there is always a tendency to throw professionalism out by engaging in unethical means of resolving the issues. No matter the level of provocation, always be professional in the way you handle issues. Many underdogs will want to drag you to their own level by being mischievous so they can tell the world what you are doing wrong. They have a sinister motive which you must not allow them to accomplish through you. In all you do, ask if what you are about to say or publish will enhance your brand’s professionalism.

Use the same channel: The channel used by the complainer should be your organization’s first communication tool. If the issue kicks off offline, start with that platform and incorporate others as a way to gain greater visibility for your argument or defence.

Desist from name calling: There is always a tendency to join the bandwagon by resorting to name calling or engage the use of abusive words. You do not gain friends by being abusive; you only make people laugh and wonder.

Focus on the issue: People who start the war will usually want to distract your focus by throwing up several non relevant issues. Stay on the issue, address the major issues at stake and stop jumping around to issues that are not relevant to the present crisis.

Switch and use offline tools: While the online tools may be good, wise organizations also understand the use of other offline tools that can quickly lower the tension. Always go the extra mile to deal with your clients’ complaints.

Show empathy: Whatever happens, show empathy. Never display any form of arrogance or show off an attitude. Remember 3 billion online users may be monitoring your reactions.

Communicate, communicate communicate: This is not the best time to maintain silence. Communicate the efforts you have taken, that you are taking and the solutions you have provided till the crisis dies down. Never assume people know you are trying. You have got to let everyone know you are doing something, offering help and providing ongoing assistance, and working towards a solution for the party concerned. We may not always get 100% result every time but it is obvious we will always come out better, stronger and we’ll appreciated by all.

The author is a communications specialist, Social Media expert, trainer and speaker.

www.yinkaolaito.com

 

 

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Created on 17 July 2015 Written by Yinka Olaito
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Every profession is daily going through a lot of changes. To keep pace with the trend one must keep his eyes open and be willing to dance to the rhythm of the new tune. If we must keep dancing to the old rhythm, it is obvious our  dancing steps will not match the rhythm.

Corporate communication is all encompassing. Professional must have the right information from marketing, sales, production and all manner of departments to be able to communicate or give out right information. Information sharing platforms also have become varied and the sooner one masters or get  accustom to these media the better. In this piece today we want to examine together essential demands that can help a corporate communication professional function maximally in his/her post. The list is not exhaustive but can become helpful if they are known.

Business intelligence: in  a lay man’s language, this is the ability to source for right information, analyse them so that one is guided or be in position to help other Senior employees to make informed decision in their  day to day activities. We know the market environment is tough, only the tough can survive. If there is no adequate and advanced information about competitor at the disposal of your company, It is a matter of time before the entity will become oblivious.

Effective communication is  based on right information which sometimes must be exclusive. This will help the company to gain the  listening ears of all the stakeholders.  If what you push out is outdated and has no direct impact,  usefulness to your public, you will soon gradually lose all the respect and attention you should command. Business intelligence efforts must not be left in the hands of sales people alone, the more value you bring to the table the better for you.

Media savvy: if you hate the media, you have no value holding this position. You need to be accustomed to all the techniques of media relations which can better enhance the profile of your organization.  over exposure may be bad but lack or no  visibility at all will not help. Given the fact that media is now also varied, a true professional who  will worth his onion must also know how to take the advantage in every media platform. You cannot afford to hate any platform which your stakeholder uses. Keep your hatred at the door and do your job. If video platforms appeal to your audience do not stick only to audio or printed media only. You cannot make much impact that way.

Relationship management: the dynamics of relationship management is changing. Couple with physical contacts is now virtual relationships at the global level. How much of this you can handle will determine how far you can go

Crisis skill :no one prays for crisis but it is is part of life. You do not really know if you can handle or tolerate other people until you have a crisis at hand. You do not also know the worth of patience, endurance and adequate preparation until real crisis hits your lane. Be exceptionally informed and  develop right skills in this area. Many of us In developing countries need to continually learn from counterparts in advanced Countries.  It will do us a whole lot of good.

Diplomatic but truthful: diplomacy is part of corporate communication skill but as we know there is often a thin line between this and falsehood, propaganda and half truth. Many cross the  line easily. Truth today is becoming a social capital and It is soon placed in front of everyone in this age of technology. You need to work out the details here to be taken serious.

Information and data management : in addition to the above, information and data management is very essential today. Data management is no longer the confine of research and development department, to be  seen as valuable have your information at your finger tip through adequate data management.

Public speaking: it is not only what you know, how you say what you know will go a long way in building your trust  and ‘believability’ quotient. Be warned. Hone your public speaking skills. You will never regret this any day.

Story telling: of course we know we are in the age of creative sorry telling, corporate communication professionals must constantly hone their story telling ability

 

 

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