Maintaining Stakeholder Relationships During a Pandemic
With the current situation surrounding the Covid-19 pandemic, everything seems to have slowed down. The entire world is locked away in their homes and industries, including Public Relations have taken a major hit. The pace of work-life has become crazier and the only way to stay connected is through technology. But with everyone working from home, how can we sustain the same relations with our clients and vendors, all the while ensuring that employees are working as a team?
Working with Clients
Providing consistent assurance during a crisis helps strengthen relationships with everyone you work with, especially your clients. Proactively establish that you will deliver to the utmost of your capabilities. This shows that you are a reliable and dependable partner.
Ramp up communication to remain available and accessible. While a delay in delivering is understandable given the unexpected circumstances, you wouldn’t want to sever relations by providing unsatisfactory services. Therefore, communicate the feasibility before taking on projects.
Internally, restructure your teams and delegate roles to adapt to the need of the situation.
Crises bring uncertainty and every action that you take during a crisis speaks volumes about your company. So, when tough times set in, maintaining transparency becomes essential.
From expressing gratitude to appreciating your partners for their support, constant communication shows that you are not just concerned with your organization but also care about those who lend their services to you.
Reinforce their belief in you by assuring them that you value the partnership and that you will continue to work alongside them in the future.
While clients are important to bring in business, employees are the ones who work hard on projects and help the organization grow. In a time when we’re all working from home and only switch on the news to be greeted with something negative, the onus of making sure that employees remain engaged and motivated partly falls on the employer.
The key is to have an empathetic approach in your communication to your employees. This can help you come up with better solutions for the problems that they may be facing. Invest in their holistic well-being and extend support wherever possible. Employees are the cogwheels of your functioning and without them, the operations of your organization can come to a standstill.
For your own brand
This is also the time to show the world your humane side. Give back to the community wherever possible. In March, Unilever committed to contributing 100M euros to fight the battle against COVID-19. A few more renowned names that came ahead with sizable donations were Flipkart, Walmart, Tata Group and Wipro. When you contribute to make a difference or bring out a positive change, it helps build trust with your audience. Efforts taken during the lockdown will give your brand a kick-start once the quarantine ends. After all, it’s about sustaining and growing in a post-covid world.
Also, use of social media effectively. The world is working from home and everyone is online most of the time. This is a great time to publish more blogs and divert your focus to Thought Leadership Articles to make your presence known. Reports state that 66% give Thought Leadership Articles top priority and a whopping 71% have confirmed that it brought in more traffic on their website.
With a crisis that nobody could predict, there is no life that hasn’t been affected or untouched. In such trying times, the need of the hour is to strengthen relationships with key stakeholders. So that once this situation settles, you can emerge stronger and by the renewed goodwill and trust that you’ve established, you can leap back into action a little smoother.