Crisis communication planning and simulation


Sometimes issues break and escalate through social media, other times whistle-blowers are central to the revelation of malpractice and misconduct, marking the beginning of a potential crisis.

Six O’Clock works with a range of organisations to plan and develop comprehensive issues and crisis communication strategies, bringing clarity and rigour to the assessment and management of corporate reputation risk and designed to complement and support business continuity plans. Among a host of clients, we’ve worked with shopping centre owners, law firms, education and aged care providers, financial services companies, sporting bodies and health insurers.

A key component of the package is the design and delivery of crisis communication simulation exercises aimed at stress-testing the efficiency and effectiveness of a company’s risk assessment protocols and communication response procedures, particularly in the context of a complex and/or escalating issue.

Facilitated by Six O’Clock, the highly-interactive sessions are based on a relevant scenario that meet the specific needs of the client, one which has the potential to materially impact corporate brand reputation and, ultimately, commercial outcomes.  They include a range of elements including mock internal meetings, media interviews for broadcast, radio and print channels and/or media conferences (including camera/sound equipment), stakeholder relations, and social media content and commentary.

Through Six O’Clock’s crisis communication simulation, participants will:

  • Consider both operational and communication elements in the context of reputation risk management
  • Focus on communication processes and protocols to enable the effective and timely flow of information to and among key stakeholders (internal and external)
  • Develop and test key messages and communication materials, by stakeholder group, which evolve as the scenario unfolds
  • Simulate ‘live’ discussions with a range of stakeholders and across a variety of channels
  • See how key decisions, processes and messages influence the perception of an organisation through mock editorial coverage and digital and social posts.

Led by Group Adviser Genevieve Mills, with support from the firm’s directors and senior advisers, Six O’Clock’s crisis communication planning and simulation package draws on decades of collective issues and crisis management experience to guide participants through a best-practice approach.