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Emergency Preparedness: A Crisis of Confidence

In 2019, Forbes and Deloitte surveyed over 300 corporate board members and only 49 percent said their companies were prepared for likely crisis scenarios. Now, four years later, a new global study of over 1,100 C-suite executives (including 670 CEOs) reports that corporate leaders are even less confident in their firms’ readiness to handle emergencies.

According to The Conference Board’s C-Suite Outlook 2023, less than 20% of CEOs feel their organizations are prepared to handle crises like civil unrest, terrorism, and natural disasters. It is not surprising that leadership reported being more prepared to manage a crisis event based on recent experiences (e.g., global pandemic) compared with emergencies they have yet to encounter (e.g., gun violence or extreme climate events).

While C-suite executives focus on driving growth despite the economic downturn, geopolitical instability, and labor shortages, what can be done to bolster confidence in their company’s ability to respond effectively to emergencies? Especially since so many events that have the potential to affect not only employees’ lives but brand reputation?

Crisis preparedness starts with acknowledging that, while unlikely, emergencies do happen.

The cornerstones of emergency preparedness are an Emergency Action Plan, a Communications Matrix, a Crisis Management Team and regular Tabletop Exercises. A crisis demands a rapid centralized response and clear line of command. In the hybrid global workplace in which we all operate, a company's management must have clear triggers to move their firm from normal procedures to ‘crisis mode.’

Want to learn how Insite can help build confidence around Emergency Preparedness practices? Contact Insite for a consultation.


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