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Firm launches crisis management service for businesses

By Gregory Austin Nwakunor
09 March 2021   |   4:19 am
Twenty-seven per cent of businesses in Nigeria suffered a major impact from the coronavirus pandemic in the period between second and third quarter of 2020, while 9.9 per cent of the respondents....

Business Director, Jerry Sawyerr(left) Group Managing Director, Yomi Badejo-Okusanya and Lead, Business Innovation & Strategy, Sunkanmi Ogunniyi all of CMC Connect Burson Cohn & Wolfe (BCW) at the media briefing to announce the launch of the Crisis Action Plan recently in Lagos.

Twenty-seven per cent of businesses in Nigeria suffered a major impact from the coronavirus pandemic in the period between second and third quarter of 2020, while 9.9 per cent of the respondents have crisis management plan in place and 59 per cent never had a crisis management plan before the COVID-19 pandemic.
The research result was revealed in Lagos on Thursday, February 25, 2021 by leading public relations firm, CMC Connect BCW, a member of the CMC Connect Group and an affiliate of Burson Cohn & Wolfe global communications agency. 
The group said unprecedented global health crisis has thrown up the need for businesses to have a crisis management plan as revealed in the research conducted to measure the Relevance of Crisis Communication on Businesses in Nigeria during the COVID-19 Health scourge.    

The communications company used the opportunity to announce its new service offering: Crisis & Issues Management Specialised Service to media men in Lagos. 
The research was carried out on over 200 business owners and employees and further revealed that 78 per cent of respondents agreed that the existence of a crisis management plan was important in inspiring confidence in or1ganisational leadership. 
Insights gathered from this research confirmed the gap in strategic crisis management for businesses which the company hopes to fill with its specialized service. 
The Crisis and Issues Management service is a specialised portfolio that provides a strategic roadmap for crisis, employing a three-step approach – Prepare, Manage, Recover to guarantees business sustainability and continuity in spite of a crisis.  
The Group Managing Director, CMC Connect (Perception Managers), Mr. Yomi-Badejo-Okusanya, said: “When a crisis occurs, there is a breakdown of trust between the organisation and its stakeholders. Trust is a currency on which stakeholders trade, and it defines their loyalty and goodwill. Once this is disrupted, the organisation is on its way down.
“However, crisis preparedness presents an opportunity to rebuild trust and gain customer loyalty. Many organisations that have bounced back from major crisis to dominate the industry. Meaning that, crisis by itself is not an end but could be taken advantage of if planned for. This is where your crisis preparedness comes in, requiring skill and expertise in managing and maintaining propriety in the middle a storm.”
Business Director, CMC Connect BCW, Jerry Sawyerr, said that the service is not limited to organisations but also to government and individuals who are concerned about sustaining their brands regardless of crisis.
‘’Crisis happens all the time, most times, unannounced. It’s therefore important for organisations to take crisis planning seriously. Going forward, we are advocating for government to make it compulsory for any business to have a crisis plan as part of requirements for registration. Every limited liability company must have a crisis manual before being allowed to operate, much like having a fire escape plan for building before approval by the government,’’ he said. 
Led by an experienced team of experts in crisis management and a strategic advisory council locally and internationally, the portfolio will focus on providing services including crisis communications, issues management, risk and impact assessment, crisis manual development and training.