No company will ever be fully prepared for any crisis to their business. The key is to develop a standard contingency plan to keep the public informed through the media on how they handle the crisis.

There are Ten Questions a Reporter Will Want to Know in a Hard News Situation:

- What happened?
- Why did it happen?
- Was anyone injured or affected from it?
- Could this have been prevented?
- Has this ever happened before?
- Currently, what are you doing about it?
- When will the problem be solved?
- How will you prevent this from happening again?
- Did you know this was going to happen?
- What would you like to say to those affected?

Have a designated person in your company to answer questions from the press. In an extreme crisis situation, the CEO or the Chairman of the company should preferably be the main spoke person in order to project an honest and open attitude.

When dealing with reporters from the tabloids, please ensure you handle tricky questions carefully. Never release information which you “off the record”, it will be published. Avoid being put into a situation which you have to answer a YES or NO. Be prepared for open ended questions and prepare a Frequent asked Question (FAQ) list.

Try your best to avoid having negative press publicity. The negative impact will remain in the minds of the public for a long time. Always remember if bad press happen once is an incident. If it happens twice is a coincidence. If it happens 3 times, it has a pattern! Having it 4 times, it has become a lifestyle!

Author's Bio: 

Andrew Chow is a certified Life Coach, Serial Entrepreneur, Speaker/Author and Master Match Maker in Singapore. Founded IDEAMART (S) PTE LTD in 1994, Andrew won the Spirit of Enterprise Award in 2008 and the Successful Entrepreneur Award in 2010. Graduated from Thames Valley University, Andrew is also a Certified Trainer, Assessor and Developer under WDA-WSQ courses.

Andrew had more than 130 interviews and features about him or his business since 2005 from Channel News Asia, News 8, 938Live, Business Times, Zao Bao, Berita Harian, Today, The New Paper, My Paper, STOMP, FEMALE, HER WORLD, PEAK, SHAPE, Lifestyle, etc). Andrew was also the business coach on Effective Media Management for Singapore's leading radio station 938live - Positive Business Minute.