When crises come knocking, an organization’s operations, reputation, and often its very survival hang in the balance. These unwanted visitors will likely arrive at every company’s doorstep; the Aon-sponsored 2012 Reputation Review report issued by Oxford Metrica says businesses can expect a value-destroying catastrophe once every five years. In 2012 and 2013 alone, according to research conducted by Deloitte US, companies in the US lost US$350 billion in market valuation and suffered more than US$45 billion in losses, fines, and penalties due to such calamities.
Not only are the frequency and magnitude of crises increasing, but the array of emergencies also continues to expand and evolve. Organizations that once viewed crisis management as a matter of recovery from physical disasters, such as earthquakes and floods, are quickly realizing that any number of threats—including terrorist attacks, cyber breaches, industrial explosions, and wide-scale employee fraud—can rear up suddenly to upend the ordinary course of business.
Crises today require active leadership from top management, but for even the best managers, unexpected disasters can be a shock, often inducing confusion rather than a cool-headed response—and understandably so. “Managing crises calls upon different skills from managing at other times,” says Peter Dent, Deloitte Global Crisis Management Leader. “But, those organizations who do it well and take control have a chance to emerge stronger by seizing the opportunity to make needed changes.”
Research shows that companies that have navigated effectively through crises before are best equipped to lead when disaster strikes next, embarking more quickly on a strategic plan to regain control. “When the moment arrives, experience matters,” Dent says. “If a company doesn’t have it, there is tremendous value in teaming up with a leader like Deloitte.”
With decades of crisis-fighting experience, Deloitte member firm professionals have played a crucial role helping clients over the years prepare for, respond to, and recover from their darkest hours. Dent says, “Deloitte’s crisis specialists have helped member firm clients in different industries worldwide face down some of the biggest tests in their histories—bankruptcies, regulatory challenges, cyberattacks, and much more.”
This support was amplified in FY2015 when Deloitte collected its crisis specialists from across the globe into a multidisciplinary market offering. “By creating a close-knit community of crisis management specialists in nearly 150 countries across our member firm network, Deloitte can more easily provide end-to-end business support before, during, and after a crisis with the industry-specific and functional skills needed in each case,” explains Rhoda Woo, Enterprise Risk Management director and crisis management leader, Deloitte US. “We can make a more powerful impact by filling a need in the market for an organization with Deloitte’s know-how and global reach to help clients tackle the inevitable.”
Deloitte offers clients a full spectrum of crisis management services, from training exercises for top leadership to real-time crisis response and post-crisis repair and reform. “With an organization primed for crisis response, Deloitte can pull from its team of crisis specialists at a moment’s notice to help clients with real-time response, crisis communications, around-the-clock monitoring, and business viability at the height of crisis, as well as help guide organizations through effective solutions and needed reforms in the aftermath,” says Rick Cudworth, Resilience & Crisis Management leader at Deloitte UK.