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Lucien Canton

Why Good Managers Sometimes Make Bad Crisis Leaders

By Lucien Canton You are the manager of a big company and you know your business. Each day, you make important decisions regarding money, policy and strategy. You’re in total control. Without warning, you are confronted with a major crisis: an earthquake, a fire or a reputational risk. Now you find yourself uncertain and unsure. […]

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Lucien Canton

Exercise Your Crisis Decision-Making Skills

By Lucien Canton On July 19, 1989 United Flight 232 crash landed at the airport in Sioux City, Iowa killing 111 of the 296 people on board. Many of those who survived owe their lives to a coordinated interagency response by the county. The outcome might have been much different. The Sioux City airport was […]

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Lucien Canton

Three Questions to Ask After a Disaster

By Lucien Canton Just surviving a disaster or rapidly resuming operations is not always sufficient to guarantee the future of a company. Physical damage is often the easiest problem to deal with following a disaster. But quick repairs alone do not equate to business survival if you cannot produce goods and services or there is […]

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Lucien Canton

Don’t Go it Alone in a Corporate Crisis

By Lucien Canton During the Midwest floods in 1993, White Star Textile Services in Des Moines found itself faced with an ironic situation. The encroaching flood waters had shut down all six pumps at the local water plant and there wasn’t even enough water to flush toilets, let alone process 100,000 pounds of laundry each […]

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Lucien Canton

Leading in Crisis: The Four Traps of Decision Making

By Lucien Canton During the second day’s fighting at Gettysburg on July 2, 1863, Colonel Strong Vincent, a brigade commander in the Army of the Potomac, learned from a passing courier that the Union left flank was undefended and that the Confederates were advancing on Little Round Top. Seizing this position would allow the Confederates […]

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Lucien Canton

Preparedness Planning: Three Vital Steps

By Lucien Canton The single biggest mistake organizations make in preparedness planning is to treat disasters as something outside normal business operations. There is a tendency to see disasters as a class by themselves, one that requires specialized plans and procedures. The truth is that disasters are part of a continuum that begins with day-to-day […]

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Lucien Canton

Four Ways to Counter the Costs of Disaster

By Lucien Canton Following the Northridge Earthquake in 1994 many businesses that had survived the temblor relatively unscathed suddenly found their revenues declining. For a number of years prior, the region had been experiencing a minor population exodus as the aerospace industry declined in response to lower government spending. Many people who had lost their […]

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Lucien Canton

Three Reasons Your Emergency Plan Will Fail

By Lucien Canton When the Exxon Valdez ran aground in Prince William Sound in 1989 it was one of those extremely rare occurrences where the conditions of the crisis almost exactly matched the planning assumptions in the company’s emergency plan. The weather conditions, the size of the spill – It was as if the plan […]

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Lucien Canton

Three Keys to Successful Crisis Management

By Lucien Canton When the first hijacked plane slammed into the North Tower of the World Trade Center at 8:46 AM on September 11, 2001, Robert Scott, president and chief operating officer of Morgan Stanley-Dean Whittier, was at 3 World Trade Center addressing 400 members of the National Association of Business Economists. Scott evacuated the […]