Back from the brink

Crisis management

Most management teams have never faced a crisis, and hence have little idea of the chain reaction of events and negative consequences that may occur. Similarly, they will have limited knowledge and experience of the actions that can be taken to prevent such a crisis spiraling out of control.

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When a crisis hits, the overriding requirement is to take full control of the organization so that actions and responses can be coordinated. If there are liquidity issues, a critical first step will be to understand and manage cash flows to minimize leakage and buy more time. Proactive communication is vital to ensure that financial and other stakeholders (including employees and customers) are reassured and understand the decisions being taken.

Once a business has been stabilized, and the immediate future secured, the key issues must be evaluated and a robust medium-term turnaround plan prepared. This will need to encompass all aspects of strategy, operations, and finances, with appropriate prioritization of the critical next steps. At the same time, contingency plans and alternative strategies should be prepared in case they need to be actioned to protect value for stakeholders.

Deloitte restructuring professionals have first-hand experience of supporting and advising management teams through crisis situations.