Empowering Teams in a Crisis

May 5, 2020
By Jeannie Entin, VP of Communications, Aclima
Empowering Teams in a Crisis

By Jeannie Entin

Last week we spoke with Abby Lunardini, CCO of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI). Much of what CZI does is relevant to pandemic response because this philanthropic organization is focused on finding new ways to leverage technology, advocacy, and collaboration to accelerate progress in science, education, criminal justice reform, housing affordability, and immigration.

Abby’s team has been hard at work in recent weeks on both internal and external communications efforts. During the May 1 #FridayForum she shared candid and thoughtful stories about how her team is handling communications during COVID-19. She offered these strategies for empowering teams:

Keep internal teams connected and engaged – CZI hosts daily 15-minute morning online meet-ups for the organization focused on fun and connection before discussing the serious and impactful work in progress

Move quickly – To help guide prioritization and maintain long-term motivation, encourage teams to focus on impact and helping people

Focus on science – Bring in third-party experts to provide credible information that’s science-based, for example this Facebook Live presentation about vaccines with CZI founders Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg and expert Dr. Bonnie Maldonado from Stanford

Remember to “keep comm” – Communications professionals are hard-wired for crises; we know how to keep calm to mitigate risk, predict how audiences will respond and determine what’s important vs. what’s just noise

According to Abby, organizations rely on communications leaders being able to make decisions in a crisis with a focus on what matters. She encourages her team and all of us to lean into that.

If you missed our May 1 FridayForum, here’s the link to watch it on FaceBook Live.

Join us for NEXT WEEK’S #FRIDAYFORUM on May 8, 2020 at 11 AM PT/2 PM ET

What Brands Need to Know About COVID-19 Social Media and Consumer Behavior

1. Join our Zoom Room. Please e-mail shruti.sharma@hp.com before the meeting to get your calendar invite.

2. Go to https://www.facebook.com/groups/prsasv/ or https://www.facebook.com/prsasf/ to join the watch parties. You can livestream the Forum without joining either FB group. If you’d like to post comments before or after the event, please visit our pages ahead of time and ask to join.

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