5 essential questions for the first 15 minutes of a crisis

At the onset of any crisis, organizations must determine the answers to these questions promptly.

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It is in this hour that key decisions are made and important actions are taken. What may be determined during this time is whether a company or organization’s crisis response will be effective or will fail.

So while you may know how important the first 60 minutes are, have you considered the first 15 minutes? Those “platinum minutes” are the time when the essential facts are gathered and the crisis team gains crucial information that will shape the next hours or days of the crisis response.

In a time of potential crisis, there are questions that should be promptly asked within those first minutes:

1. Focus on the most immediate and pressing issue. Is there any current danger to human beings? That clearly should be a subject that is immediately addressed. Was anyone hurt or injured? In the farming community, the same questions can be posed for animals involved in a farm crisis; or for a food company, whether there is damaged product in the market.

2. Get the facts. Know the time the crisis began, where it happened, and other pertinent topline details.

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