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September 16, 2013
At the Washington Naval Shipyard, a Crisis Communication Plan Seemed Lacking
 
This isn't to pick on the U.S. Navy at a time of duress, but based on coverage viewed a while ago (shortly before 1 P.M. Eastern time) on CNN, the Washington Naval Shipyard seemed to be doing a poor job of crisis communication in the shootings that occurred there today. A Navy commander was being interviewed in the street with microphones being pushed at him and sirens in the background, with no visual aids, etc., to put what he was saying into context (or to clearly identify who he was).

Is it fair to suggest that a shipyard should have at least a rudimentary media center, and a previously drilled crisis communication plan in action at a time like this? Sadly, I think so. (The same holds, no doubt, for a host of other facilities, public and private, that could find themselves in similar emergency circumstances.)

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Doug Bedell has a background in journalism and PR and is the owner of Resource Relations LLC in Central PA, focusing on organizational and crisis communication. He’s the community manager of SimplyFair.net, a social network on fairness. On the Web, Doug’s at www.ResourceRelations.com. On Twitter, he’s @DougBeetle.
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