Crises are an unfortunate fact of life and history, and businesses are especially vulnerable to them since you can’t control the ones you experience. A crisis management strategy will, however, have a significant impact when it comes to preparing for a crisis and responding if it occurs.

Here are some crisis management statistics that show how important it is to have a crisis communication strategy, and how it will benefit your business.

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Crisis Management Statistics

General Crisis Management Statistics

  • Seven out of 10 organizations report plans to increase their investments in building resilience. (PWC)
  • Only 23% of survey respondents felt their business’ various crisis management functions are well integrated. (PWC)
  • 75% of respondents said technology has facilitated the coordination of their organizations crisis response team. (PWC)
  • Areas that make businesses feel most vulnerable to crisis are corporate reputation, cyber-crime, and rumors. (Deloitte)
  • Business’ key areas of crisis response planning are creating clear alert and mobilization plans (45%), clearly defined governance and chain-of-command (44%), and clearly defined roles for who should act in certain situations (42%). (Deloitte)
  • Evaluating key risk scenarios (50%) and engaging multifunctional teams (46%) are significant steps taken by businesses practicing crisis preparedness. (Deloitte)
  • Businesses that have already experienced a crisis say the most important lessons they’ve learned or would do differently are doing more to identify crisis scenarios (34%), executing a more timely and robust communications plan (29%), and communicating more effectively with employees (29%). (Deloitte)

Why You Need a Crisis Management Strategy

  • 69% of business leaders reported experiencing a crisis over a period of five years, with the average number of crises being three. (PWC)
  • A crisis-agnostic management strategy is the hallmark of a resilient organization, but only 35% of survey respondents have a crisis response plan that is crisis-agnostic. (PWC)
  • In 2019, 95% of PWC survey respondents said they expected a crisis to hit within the next two years, but only 30% of respondents to the 2021 survey said they had a crisis management team in place when the COVID-19 pandemic hit. (PWC)
  • Only 49% of respondents to a Deloitte survey say their companies have playbooks for likely crisis scenarios. (Deloitte)
  • 30% of board members that experienced past crises said their reputations recovered in less than a year. 16% said it took four years or more. (Deloitte)
  • 49% of respondents engage with management to understand their efforts in crisis preparedness, but only half say that board members and management have specific conversations about crisis prevention. (Deloitte)
  • Only 32% of respondents say part of their crisis response planning is before-the-fact crisis simulation or wargaming, which is scenario role play. (Deloitte)

Crisis Communication

  • 59% of business communicators say they have a communications strategy drafted, but only 45% admit to having a documented crisis communications plan. (JOTW)
  • Much of the training top executives receive around crisis management is little more than training in crisis communications. (McKinsey)
  • 62% of survey respondents used a crisis response plan during the COVID-19 pandemic. (PWC)
  • Among businesses that reported having a strong crisis communication plan, the key elements of their plans were outreach to employees (71%), outreach to customers (63%), and outreach to key constituents (53%). (Deloitte)
  • When it comes to drafting communications, businesses pre-script social media messaging, pre-draft press releases, and press statements. (Deloitte)
  • 41% of respondents said communication protocols were part of their crisis management regiments. (Deloitte)
  • 28% of businesses that have been through a crisis before say that, in the future, they would communicate more effectively with customers. (Deloitte)

Crisis Management Careers

  • 95% of business leaders say their crisis management capabilities need improvement. (PWC)
  • 32% of survey respondents say their companies engage in crisis simulations or training. (Deloitte)
  • 80% of business leaders across all sectors said that their response to a crisis took into consideration the physical and emotional needs of their employees. (Deloitte)

Navigating Crisis Management

A solid approach to crisis management addresses the various kinds of crises your business might feasibly face, which can vary from company to company. For example, a large enterprise that relies on a CRM is more prone to large-scale technological crisis, and a business headquartered in Hurricane Alley is more likely to experience a crisis involving a natural disaster.

In preparation, keep tabs on warning signs that might help you get out in front of a situation before it escalates. If you find yourself in the thick of a crisis, it’s important you remain composed — which is where having a well-constructed crisis management strategy comes into play.

Once the crisis occurs, put the elements of your plan into effect. As you carry it out, start to plan your recovery, and how you’ll get your employees back to their day-to-day and ensure customers are still succeeding with your business.

As I said, the causes of crises are beyond your control, but the strategies you employ to prepare and respond to them aren't. No matter the scale or nature of your business, it always serves you to have a crisis management plan on hand.

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Originally published Mar 16, 2022 7:15:00 AM, updated March 16 2022

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Crisis Management