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מוסקל מדיה - תקשורת, ייעוץ אסטרטגי וניהול משברים
מוסקל מדיה - תקשורת, ייעוץ אסטרטגי וניהול משברים
מוסקל מדיה - תקשורת, ייעוץ אסטרטגי וניהול משברים
מוסקל מדיה - תקשורת, ייעוץ אסטרטגי וניהול משברים
מוסקל מדיה - תקשורת, ייעוץ אסטרטגי וניהול משברים
מוסקל מדיה - תקשורת, ייעוץ אסטרטגי וניהול משברים
מוסקל מדיה - תקשורת, ייעוץ אסטרטגי וניהול משברים
מוסקל מדיה - תקשורת, ייעוץ אסטרטגי וניהול משברים

Do not wallow in a crisis: marking two years to the Coronavirus pandemic - time to start recovering.

Avi Muskal


Some two years after the COVID-19 virus made rapid acquaintance with most countries of the world, one can and should talk about the day after. Israel, and many other countries, are experiencing now the pick of the pandemic's fifth wave, which is dominated by the current variant, Omicron. The Israeli Ministry of Health was quick to sharply attack Prof. Idit Matot of Ichilov hospital in Tel-Aviv, who suggested to re-evaluate the test and quarantine policy, and to not isolate people who do not feel ill. In fact, this statement reinforced the position of the Israeli Association of Public Health Physicians, and was an early bird which is sent from our Noah's ark, to see if the waters had receded from the surface of the ground.


Not far from here, in the UK, which only a week ago marked 200,000 confirmed cases of Coronavirus per day, numbers have already dropped to less than a half. Prime Minister Boris Johnson is now formulating a plan for the day after - "Life with Corona". According to the plan, its first stage will be the scaling down of quarantine obligation and the distribution of rapid tests. In Israel, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett expressed a different message: "The next weeks will be challenging, but we have not lost control. We are facing a contagion wave, that has hit the world. The numbers are higher than what we have not known before. The Omicron is more contagious than all other variants combined."



In Britain, which has led a fierce struggle against the coronavirus, they discuss the transition from a pandemic to an endemic; from an unstoppable epidemic to a contagious disease that people live with and are able to carry on with their lives. Each government will determine the right time to move on to the next stage, but clearly, it is impossible to continue to run our lives at containment phase. This applies not only in regards to Corona: the life span of every crisis includes a containment phase which follows immediately the breakout phase. But in any crisis, it is equally important to eventually move onwards, to the recovery phase and ultimately, return to routine.


We will leave the epidemiology to health experts. As for us, we shall talk about crisis situations that every society and organization may, according to statistics, experience once every two years. In which, immediately after coping with the crisis, the recovery phase will follow and contain the following:

Damage assessment: monitoring reputation damage, sales and revenue damage and other such factors. At this phase we will accurately measure, to which extent and exactly what damage was done. In doing so, we will be aware of possible gaps between the general public's attitudes towards the company, and among the shareholders, for example. US Investor Warren Buffet says: “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it.”


Coping analysis: in what ways was the strategic rescue plan carried out? And to which degree? If no such plan existed, putting one together would make top priority. This phase is where we can assess the organization's strengths and weaknesses during the challenge. Beyond the obvious scrutiny of, what went wrong, how events unfolded, and what were the consequences, it is also important to assess the steps which the organization took in real time, its' procedures and regulations, and their impact.


Readiness for the next crisis: training and evaluation. The fact that you have just emerged from one crisis does not preclude the possibility that you will find yourself facing another one in the near future. Therefore, immediately upon completion of the damage assessment and the coping analysis, the lessons learned should be examined by assessing the company’s readiness for crisis.


This brings us to the most important phase in concluding the crisis: Image Recovery. This phase is where you may reflect, reassess and rebuild your narrative, the special story of the company or organization. The story can be refreshed and made more interesting and relevant - not despite the crisis but thanks to it. This story should be authentic, and respond to public's covert feelings and hopes. As long as the company's customers will relate and share interests with the position that the narrative reflects, they will support it and even defend it against critique.


We shall tell and convey this new narrative in numerous channels and platforms: the company's website, blog, podcast and social media. We will encourage the public to share and spread our story, we will not censor critical responses, but deal with them. 'How we tell the story', is no less important than 'what we tell'. Therefore, we will tell it in creative ways, using video, infographics and animation. A successful and creative implementation will raise interest not only among the shareholders and customers of the company but also among journalists.


Back to Coronavirus, alongside the justified pursuit of immediate solutions, it is time to look beyond, as well. It is likely that the virus will remain with us, in one variant or another. But in the age of vaccination and high capabilities of diagnosis and treatment - even the highly contagious Omicron, does not take a life toll the way the coronavirus claimed two years ago.

The ability of the general public, including company's employees, to maintain life in an ongoing emergency mode is limited. Eventually, as Prof. Joseph Allen, head of the Harvard School of Public Health, said two months ago, it would not be possible to keep students in masks forever, "as useful as the masks are - there is a time when it will also be important to move forward and remove the masks." Being in the midst of the fifth wave, it sounds too early, but the rationale for removing the masks and the transition to the recovery phase and getting back to normal is essential for all the realms of life. While one should know how to cope with crisis, one must not wallow in an ongoing emergency routine.

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אבי מוסקל - ניהול משברים ומוניטין

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