How to Prepare for Unpredictable Crises: The 3 Ps of Crisis Prep


How to Prepare for Unpredictable Crises: The 3 Ps of Crisis Prep

The collapse of Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) was a shock to many business leaders, but it’s just one example of the unexpected events that can threaten a company’s very existence.

From the Great Recession to COVID-19, external factors can have a significant impact on business operations, so it’s crucial to be prepared for “black swan” events coming out of left field.

But how can you prepare for the unpredictable?

Here are the 3 Ps of Crisis Prep that every business leader should consider:


Develop a crisis communications and management plan that outlines how your team will respond to various crisis scenarios. This plan should include such tools and tactics as holding statements, sample messaging for different potential situations, templates, and flowcharts to guide your team’s actions. By having a plan in place that can be adapted to address a particular event, you can better prepare your team to respond quickly and effectively when a crisis inevitably hits.


Identify the key players who will be part of your crisis management team. This team should include internal staff and external experts who can provide a diverse range of perspectives and knowledge. Those external experts should absolutely include at least one experienced crisis communicator who can ensure that the response doesn’t inadvertently make the crisis worse. It’s also essential that the team includes executive leaders who have decision-making authority so you can take swift action when needed. And don’t forget to designate backups, so you’re ready in case someone is unavailable when a crisis occurs.


Preparation is key to managing a crisis successfully. By practicing different scenarios, your team can develop the skills and experience needed to handle unexpected events. Consider conducting on-camera drills or tabletop exercises to give your team members a chance to practice their response and improve their communication skills.

While it’s impossible to predict every crisis that could impact your business, following the 3 Ps of Crisis Prep will ensure that you’re better prepared for the unexpected.