Crisis Communication

This page offers easy access to my online readings and how-to-do-it tip sheets focused on the challenges of performing public relations in a crisis situation.

Michael Turney, Ph.D., ABC
Professor Emeritus, Northern Kentucky University

What type of public relations crisis will you face?

No one knows. No one can predict what tomorrow will bring let alone what may or may not occur during a lifetime career in public relations. What I can tell you, and what I've written elsewhere, is that countless books, articles, and news stories offer urgent warnings about the increasing likelihood of facing a major public relations crisis regardless of what kind of business, industry, or non-profit organization employs you.

Even if you end up being one of the lucky ones who never faces a crisis, the possibility of confronting one deserves consideration and advance planning. You need to pay attention to what's happening around you and keep up to date on current trends in crisis occurrence and crisis response techniques. But, unless you work for a high profile organization in a high-risk environment, crisis planning needn't be a daily concern.

One of the best ways to keep up with crisis trends is the Annual ICM Crisis Report published by the Institute for Crisis Management (ICM) of Louisville, Kentucky. It's been doing crisis communication planning, training, and consulting for Fortune 500 companies and small businesses around the world since 1989. Its Annual Crisis Reports summarize the crises that hit each year and analyze the news coverage they triggered. They're a wonderful way to maintain a clear perspective on the need for crisis management. Here's a link to the latest ICM Annual Crisis Report.

Practicing
Public Relations

main page
 


 
Online readings in public relations
 


 
Turney's Tips
How-to-do-it
guidelines
 


 
Institute for Crisis Management


Understanding crisis communication.

  My online readings in public relations supplement introductory public relations texts by explaining basic terms and concepts, tracing the evolution of the public relations profession, and discussing everyday PR tasks and issues. The articles focused on crisis communication include:

Preparing a crisis communication plan.

  Turney's Tips are a series of how-to-do-it guidelines for writing a news release, formatting a speech, drafting a strategic communication plan, and completing other public relations tasks. Each is saved as a pdf-file you should be able to view and print on any computer, and they're formatted as tip sheets so you can quickly and easily follow them as you create your own working documents.

The following two should (a) help you prepare for a crisis and (b) keep you on track when you're facing one.