Taking it slowly

One minute we are wearing face masks, being told to work from home and to be cautious about an infectious Covid-19 variant. Then overnight we are out of masks, back on the daily commute to the office and can resume ‘normal’ life. The question is how can you communicate effectively when you move to recovery?

It starts with being clear about what recovery is, what it means and what may need to change for the future. Put the focus on what you have learnt from the experience and how this can improve lives, and organisations. Every crisis presents an opportunity to develop and make things better. It is the same as personal development, some times you have to get to the worse point to really improve.

Another key is to avoid rushing away from the situation you have been in. Don’t try to create false distance. And definitely don’t try to deny the experiences that people have had and what they have been through. It is why recovery can only really happen when the people who are most affected are ready to move to recovery.

Speeding away from a crisis brings many risks. There are risks that you will not see the next wave up ahead as you are blinkered, feeling you way out. That you will fail to learn key lessons from the experience and revisit plans to ensure they are improved and fit for the future. There are risks that you appear insensitive to those who may be grieving, upset or still trying to deal with what has happened.

Communicating out of crisis and into recovery is not easy. It is why we should train and plan for this latter part of the crisis and not just test our ability to respond to the initial problem. This week has left me with many concerns about opportunities that may be lost. Now is the time to take stock and be ready for the difficult months ahead.

This entry was posted in communication, Covid-19, crisis communication, PR and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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