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training for crisis situations before an incident, not in the midst of it (whether you face a mining disaster, sex scandal, hurricane or other problem—don’t practice on CNN.)

Leaders can motivate and improve morale via a few words; helpful phrases include “together we’ll rebuild even better,” “remember that

evil exists, but there’s more good in the world,” “sometimes bad things happen and there’s no reason,” “leaders play the hand that’s dealt,” “tomorrow will be better and the next day even better.” Be careful about religious messages (a normally devout employee lashed out when an executive attempted to “pray for him.”) Don’t force people to talk. After

Boardroom Brieng: Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery

devastating events it is often best just to bring someone coffee or water, sitting comfortably in silence beside them. They’ll talk when they’re ready.

Remember that style counts

Directors and management at all levels should project calm and

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