FIR Interview: Sarah Dean Forrester on Crisis Communication – Jan 29, 2008

Updated on January 29, 2008

Crisis communication is a hot topic. In episode #310 of The Hobson & Holtz Report on January 14, it was a primary discussion point, addressing the different types of communication crises.

FIR co-host Shel Holtz expanded on that discussion with Crisis communication fundamentals, a post that looked at the roots of a crisis, three major categories of crisis, why crises escalate, developing strategies and response guidelines.

During the Don’t Panic Guide to Crisis Communications conference in London on January 25, FIR co-host Neville Hobson spoke with conference speaker and communications consultant Sarah Dean Forrester who offered additional insight into aspects of effective crisis communication planning and management.

About our Conversation Partner

Sarah Dean Forrester
Sarah Dean Forrester is a Senior Consultant and Associate Director at Trimedia, one of the UK’s leading full-service public relations and communications consultancies, based in Manchester, England.

Sarah has worked in public relations and corporate communications since leaving journalism more than twelve years ago, in sectors including healthcare, education and the emergency services.

Her work has included liaising with and supporting in-house communications staff; designing internal and external communications strategies; identifying opportunities to engender debate around relevant issues and key messages; stakeholder engagement; devising and testing key messages and contentious Q&As; coordinating staff newsletters and bulletins; devising and managing content for the consultation websites; building relationships with editors and reporters; providing and devising presentation and media skills training for spokespeople; and editing and managing the production of magazines and newsletters.

Sarah’s career experience also includes working as Head of Press Office at Greater Manchester Police, where she managed a team of ten people dealing with operational crime, major incidents, homicides, high profile trials and the reputation of the Force.

Download the 9:40 conversation here (MP3, 4.4MB), or sign up for the Interviews RSS feed to get it and future interviews automatically. For automatic synchronization with your iPod or other digital player, you’ll also need a podcatcher such as the free Juice, DopplerRadio or iTunes, or an RSS aggregator that supports podcasts such as FeedDemon.

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If you have comments or questions about this podcast, or suggestions for future interviews, email us at fircomments@gmail.com; or call the Comment Line at +1 206 222 2803 (North America) or +44 20 8133 9844 (Europe); or Skype: fircomments; or comment at Twitter: twitter.com/FIR; or at Jaiku: fir.jaiku.com. You can email your comments, questions and suggestions as MP3 file attachments, if you wish (max. 3 minutes / 5Mb attachment, please!). We’ll be happy to see how we can include your audio contribution in a show.

This FIR Interview is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years. Information: www.ragan.com.

Podsafe intro music – On A Podcast Instrumental Mix (MP3, 5Mb) by Cruisebox.

(Cross-posted from For Immediate Release, Shel’s and my podcast blog.)

Neville Hobson

Social Strategist, Communicator, Writer, and Podcaster with a curiosity for tech and how people use it. Believer in an Internet for everyone. Early adopter (and leaver) and experimenter with social media. Occasional test pilot of shiny new objects. Avid tea drinker.

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