Thursday, November 16, 2006

11/16/06 - Managing a Business Crisis


Here’s what I cover in this memo:

1. Managing a Crisis: Preparing for the Unexpected
2. Quick Dissolve Strip Vitamin &; Nanotech Delivery System


1. Managing a Crisis.

The late Harold Geneen, the creator of one of the early, great conglomerates, ITT, wrote in his classic book Managing that “Management Manages…” and this mantra is especially useful to remember when your business finds itself in a sudden crisis. But also remember that old saw: within every adversity are the seeds of a greater benefit, or as the Chinese put it, every crisis is an opportunity.

Companies, especially in volatile industries that are subject to regulatory reversals and strong competition, need to pre-plan to deal with the unexpected. How would you deal with a manufacturing error that might make your product dangerous? What would you do if someone that everyone in the company relies upon were suddenly taken away by illness or other emergency? What if a key employee is called to active duty, or arrested, or leaves for a better job? Crises take many forms, from surprise regulatory inspections to accidents and litigation to a blizzard. Management needs to have - in place - contingency plans, or at least someone who can consider contingencies, before the crisis.

Here are some things to consider:

* Pre-position a crisis management committee – an Emergency Manager needs to be ready in advance
Consider - staffing the committee, day-to-day management, setting and meeting goals
Review insurance coverage; maintain emergency contact information; SoP status

* Pre-position your outside experts for availability during an emergency

* Pre-position media outreach – spin to turn losing into winning

* Prioritize the targeted audiences with whom you need to communicate during a crisis:

* What message for what group: customers, employees, investors and, agencies

* Who delivers what message to whom and how does it get out: fax, phone, email

* Interact with the FTC, FDA and state authorities during a company crisis

* Deal with concerns from local, national or international audiences

“Management manages…” and you need to prepare for emergencies and discontinuities in advance. Your Standard Operating Procedures are important here: during an emergency good SoPs allow others in the company to perform the tasks normally handled by an absent team member. Remember that The Vitamin lawyer Consultancy has small-business friendly SoP – Operation Manual formats available.

Perhaps the most important duties of the Emergency Manager before the crisis is to make sure that (1) insurance, (2) emergency contact information and (3) SoPs are all in place. When the crisis comes upon the company, reacting quickly and communicating the right message to the key audiences becomes the priority.


2. Quick Dissolve Strips – an advanced delivery system to consider for water-soluble dietary supplements, herbals, homeopathic and nanotech products. Take a look at Winning Business Solutions for more information:


That’s all for now – I hope you find this information useful!

Thank you and have a joyful, family-filled Thanksgiving!

Ralph Fucetola JD