Merge's Blog

The problem with crisis management

crisis managementThe customer that is angry; the internal client with a pressing deadline; the employee that needs coaching.  All things that need to be addressed, and as soon as possible.  Which makes sense – deal with the most critical priorities first.  Crisis management is an important part of your job as a leader.

But what about your customers that aren’t frustrated?  And your internal clients who are patiently waiting for your attention?  And your high-performing employees?  What happens when they realize that the only way to get your attention is to get irate, or to create fake deadlines, or to dumb down their contributions?  Or even worse, what if they choose not to and simply find someone or somewhere else?

Whether they do something so that you notice them, or do nothing and walk, you’ve lost the best parts of your role as a leader.  And eventually, you’ll be left with only the people who are angry, stressed, and disengaged.

Here’s the real problem with crisis management …

The problem with continued crisis management is the eventual outcome.  Which means that what is really critical about crisis management is that you find a way to break the pattern of going from crisis to crisis.  Yes, it may require you to take your attention away from the crisis itself by delegating its management to someone else.  But it’s the only way you’ll be able to focus on getting at the root cause of the issue, and designing a solution.

Getting off the crisis management treadmill is not easy.  But I hope you can see that it’s necessary, nay even essential.  I’d love to hear about your experiences, and your challenges.   Please share by adding your comment below.

One Comment

  • You make a very good point, Merge. There is a time and place for the urgency that is crisis management. But, there are also consequences. Frequently, decisions are based on emotion and inevitably, there will be errors in judgement. The emphasis of a leader must to be on people and helping them be successful. The attributes of a good leader include having a vision, understanding realities, making decisions based on a set of values and the courage to do the right thing. When leaders become transparent on those dimensions, those that work with them become better leaders.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.