Course Overview

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This course is designed to equip those responsible for their organisation’s communications with the skills to manage their response to a major incident or crisis. The course will consider all stages of the communications response, from identifying stakeholder groups for an incident to developing a media strategy, preparing statements and managing ongoing communications.

Scheduled breaks will be provided within each session. During the course, delegates will be able to use their microphones to take part in discussions and ask the tutor any questions, there is also the option to use a webcam too. Interactivity features used during the training may include the use of breakout sessions for group work, polls and quizzes. The course is delivered via GoToTraining.

If you are interested in arranging this course for your workplace call:
UK 01253 542650
Rest of world +44 1253 542650

What's included?

  • Course slides
  • Certificate of attendance
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Details & Programme

This course will give attendees the tools and knowledge to develop a crisis communications plan and the confidence to respond on behalf of their organisation if a crisis should occur.

The course, developed by crisis communications practitioners and journalists follows industry best practice guidance, such as BS11200 ‘Crisis Management – Guidance and Good Practice’ and PD CEN/TS 17091(soon to be ISO 22361) ‘Crisis Management – Guidance for Developing a Strategic Capability’.

Course Modules

Module 1: Communication Management, Landscape and Framework

  • The crisis communications landscape and contemporary incidents including a number of case studies
  • What do good crisis communications preparations look like?
  • An introduction of an audit questionnaire to determine the current level of crisis communications preparation in delegates’ organisations, identifying any significant gaps

Module 2: Stakeholder Identification and Management

  • Identification and categorisation of stakeholders for different types of incident
  • Different communications methodologies and their appropriateness
  • Determining stakeholders’ information requirements
  • Developing a business continuity stakeholder influence matrix to determine the relative importance of each stakeholder
  • Exercise: Practise skills learned against a developing scenario

Module 3: Development of a Crisis Communications Plan, Crisis Communications Roles in Incident Teams and Communications Support Team

  • What is the purpose of a crisis communications plan?
  • Chapters and contents
  • The pros and cons of pre-written statements
  • The roles and responsibilities of a crisis manager on an incident team and the requirement for a Crisis Support Team to assist them

Module 4: Developing a Media Response Strategy

  • Understanding the requirements of traditional media and social media audiences
  • Developing a core message and lines to take
  • Different media strategies and the benefits of each
  • Developing the message for different media channels including press statements, social media, website and direct messages
  • Briefing, preparing and using spokespersons
  • Exercise: Developing a media strategy and lines to take as a situation unfolds

Module 5: Responding During an Incident

Live interactive exercise. All participants will take part in an exercise to practise the skills learned during the training. The exercise will run using a Media Incident Training Simulator (MITS), which replicates media and social media interest in an event. This will allow all delegates to use the skills they have learned to interactively respond to a developing incident. The exercise will be followed by a debrief.

Course Authors

The course has been developed by Charlie Maclean-Bristol and Jamie Donald. Jamie has developed and delivered a wide range of business continuity and crisis management training and exercises. He also has almost a decade of experience in journalism and printed media, most notably as Chief Sub Editor of a respected daily newspaper in the Northeast of Scotland. This insight into what information media outlets are seeking during an incident, and how they will use information given to them, allows Jamie to give clear guidance on how to handle stakeholder crisis communications.

Charlie is a fellow of the Business Continuity Institute, with over 25 years of experience of Crisis Management and Business Continuity. He is a module leader for an MSc Course run by Glasgow Caledonian University teaching Crisis Management and Business Continuity, is on the ISO committee developing the new ISO 22361 crisis management standard and has written several training courses some of which have been adopted by the BCI.

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Course Benefits

Following the course, delegates will be able to:

  • Describe the contemporary crisis communications landscape and the necessary steps to prepare for a major incident
  • Identify the stakeholders relevant to an incident and differentiate between their communications requirements and criticality
  • Prepare a crisis communication plan and distinguish between the different communications roles required in responding to a major incident
  • Describe the different media strategies which can be considered during an incident response
  • Demonstrate and deploy the learning from the course in an interactive exercise
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Who Should Attend?

The course is aimed at anyone who could be called on to manage their organisation’s communications during a crisis or major incident - either as a communications professional or as part of their role on a crisis management team. The course is relevant to many different disciplines including business continuity, crisis management, disaster recovery, cyber security, crisis communications, high hazard industries and emergency response.

The following should attend this course:

  • Communications managers, coaches and consultants
  • Internal communications professionals
  • Those with communications roles in incident teams
  • PR managers and consultants
  • Business Continuity, Resilience and Emergency Planning Managers looking to improve their skills and learn more about crisis communication
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In-house Options

If you would like this training delivered for your organisation only, please contact the BC Training team on 01253 542650 or email

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15 January 2021

“Gillian [Logie] was an excellent trainer and took the time to explain things in deep when someone didn't quite understand the material. She made the course very interesting with her in-depth knowledge and ability to relate to the different organisations from the group. The introductions of the quiz and group exercises meant the group really participated fully with all the activities.”

Marian McGreevy
Henderson Group
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