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7 Step Guide to Managing Internal and External (Public) Affairs During COVID-19

Updated: May 23, 2021

  1. Ask the right questions

  2. What decisions does your company have to make in response to COVID-19?

  3. Take stock in the questions you’ve already been asked. It’s your data.

  4. Shape your strategy

  5. Decide what is internal.

  6. How will your team or employees be affected in the immediate and/ or long term?

  7. Share industry insight

  8. Research and reference economic impacts and trends

  9. Decide what is external.

  10. Will your business remain open or closed?

  11. Be prepared to reference and cite how or why this decision has been made.

  12. If open, what are your hours of operation and capacity of operations and service?

  13. If closed, what steps will you be taking in the immediate?

  14. Decide how you are going to help

  15. Evaluate capabilities

  16. Are you going to retool your business?

  17. Are you going to support other industries?

  18. How can you pivot your business for the now.

  19. NOTE: This doesn’t have to be drastic. Anything helps.

  20. Review with compliance, legal and ethics

  21. Review your plan with members of your executive leadership team and your legal counsel.

  22. Listen carefully for input and make the necessary changes.

  23. Release as much appropriate and relevant information as you can

  24. Internal: It’s okay to use “limiting language” around updates wherever you need to.

  25. Send updates via email

  26. NOTE: The company-wide communication should come from the CEO or HR Leader. Be sure to give your managers a heads up.

  27. External: Treat this as a traditional PR or Marketing campaign.

  28. Post consistent messaging across social media.

  29. Release press assets and advisories to targeted press list

  30. Think: Local, State, National, Industry, Community

  31. Follow through

  32. Maintain transparency

  33. Hold office hours

  34. Field and answer questions

  35. Continue to seek more feedback

  36. Maintain confidence

  37. Know that your confidence as a leader is what matters.

  38. Take care of yourself to ensure that you show up consistently.

  39. Stay on course.

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