Here are the three tips Senior PR Manager Dana Dussing Berry shares for managing PR Crises.


Are you prepared to lead through a crisis? Hi, I’m Dana Dussing Berry, senior PR manager here at Stone Ward and a former reporter. Much of the public relations work we do focuses on sharing our client’s good news. But what happens when the news is not so good, and a crisis threatens the reputation of your business or brand? Statistics tell us almost 60 percent of business leaders have experienced a crisis, but only half have a crisis plan in place. That puts reputation and revenues at stake with 70 percent of crisis-impacted companies reporting corporate standing and financial performance taking more than a year to recover. Putting together a crisis communications plan doesn’t have to be daunting, but it does have to be well thought out. Here are three tips to get started:

  • First, define your stakeholders — internal and external — along with who will be a part of your crisis response team and their contact information.
  • Next, assess your vulnerabilities. What could happen, when, where and how it might impact your team, customers and business overall.
  • Third, create a plan of how and when you will communicate and the channels you’ll use along with sample statements, news release templates, and social media posts.

Share your crisis plan with internal audiences. If possible, media train your spokespeople and test the plan. Timeliness, empathy, clear statement of facts and speaking proactively about what is being done are critical to leading through our crisis situation and regaining trust. Thanks for being a part of our Stone Ward Monthly Insights program. I hope this will motivate you to consider crisis planning for your business. We’re here to help share your good news and plan for any not so good news.

Feel free to contact me at if we can be of help.