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Is Your Organization Ready for Rapid Response Opportunities?

Sep 14, 2020
This series on the ReThink Blog will share a checklist of how to prepare your organization for its next crisis opportunity

There are two types of media engagement: those where you execute a proactive plan and those where you spring into action in response to breaking news stories. 

Both—the known and the unknown—done correctly, require a sustained infrastructure, a substantial amount of coordination, and ever-deepening partnerships and trust-building with and among the communities and allies we work with.

In these moments, we work with our partners not just to win the news cycle, but to seize the opportunity to build the movement around our issues. 

This next series on the ReThink Blog will share a checklist of how to prepare  your organization for its next crisis opportunity.

We will delve into preparing:

Above all else, effective rapid response flows from preparation, clear lines of communication, and strategically grounded decision-making. 

Time spent gathering information or preparing materials is time that the media cycle is moving forward without your organization’s voice. Clear lines of internal communication, meanwhile, will allow you to decide what you’re doing, and who is doing it, as quickly as possible. They also help avoid the friction that comes with miscommunication and the possibility that key stakeholders may not feel “heard.” And a shared strategic understanding of your goals for the media cycle helps inform every decision. In most rapid response scenarios, advocates are pulled in a lot of competing directions, but time is finite. Having clear strategic goals will help you say “no” to distractions and keep your team’s work focused on priority outcomes. 

In a year as crazy as 2020 has been, with crisis after crisis with no real resolutions, it is more imperative than ever to streamline your organization’s response plan. This enables members of your team to move forward proactive strategies, rather than simply chasing news cycles in a reactive cycle. 

For instance, is your organization already preparing for election outcomes—no matter what they may be? Do you have a plan for November 4?

Follow along to see how to prepare for a wide variety of circumstances. Our community members can also reach out to us to help develop your own organization’s response.


How has your organization responded to the multitude of crises that have unfolded this year? Let us know @rethink_media.