SBI Media’s Boss Tasks IMCs on Four Golden Rules in Managing Crisis

Chief Executive Officer, (CEO), SBI Media Limited, Mr. Rotimi Bankole, has advised practitioners in the Integrated Marketing Communications industry to make use of the four golden rules in managing crisis.

Bankole stressed that there are certain risk factors that bring about a crisis in every organizations, adding that firms only try to mitigate the effect of the crisis.

He pointed out that the four golden rules in crisis management that organizations can use in managing crisis are: “Be the first to know, Be the first to talk, Be truthful as possible, and Be the last to talk.”

According to him, communication plays a vital role in managing crisis, as it serves as a tool in diffusing tension in times of crisis.

“In times of crisis, communication has been seen as one of the most potent tools that can diffuse tension, shape opinions and if well used can bring about some level of confidence and restoration”, Bankole said.

Be the first to know

The SBI’s boss noted that every organization must put in place an intelligence system that must be able to forecast risks of crisis. According to him, if you depend on your website to run your business, you must foresee a hack or a denial of service attack that can put you out of business for some minutes or longer. It makes you battle ready to tackle any crisis thereafter.

Be the first to talk

Bankole pointed out that once a problem occurs, the firm must be the first party to say something, adding that if the media goes ahead to publish a report on the crisis, the firm might be able to control the trend. “You will be rendered defensive and many doubts will becloud your explanations should you allow the media to get the information before you. You can only obey this rule if the first is adhered to”, he said.

Be truthful as possible

He further stressed that practitioners in the IMC industry must not be evasive on obvious facts, but rather they should be straightforward with their customers, clients and the public. “While there are some things that must not be made public for security, trade secret or investigative purposes, state clearly why you can not reveal certain facts or comment on some aspects of the matter. Do not send out template information and expect a less negative coverage of the matter”, Bankole explained.

Be the last to talk

According to him, after the firm or practitioner has explained what happened and steps being taken to resolve the crisis, the media will swing into action to colour the firm’s statements with many analysis, interpretations and conjectures. “Do not fret; you are now in control. All articles, videos and opinions are taking their form and shape from your own narrative. Once the news feeds slows down, you can do a follow-up release to either bring closure to the matter or give further updates. This will give you full control of the narrative from beginning to the end”, he said.


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