One size never fits all.

Have you ever wondered how companies can offer crisis management and business continuity exercises for a price that seems too cheap? How can they offer an exercise that is ‘cookie cutter’ while adding value to your business? This has never made sense to me and I think I am closer now to the answer.

Recently I did a quick survey of different clients I met at a conference about their views of these ‘cookie cutter’ exercises and it became evident that a lot of their engagement was budget driven where the client knew the outcome would be sub-optimum – but had their hands tied due to economics.

So, what can we do about this?

When we start thinking about exercising and testing, we need to change our traditional approach of keeping it all in the realm of BCM. We could have the opportunity to engage the human resource and/or learning and development group of the company if we can show that the exercise will enhance participants’ preparedness and give them a true learning experience. I don’t believe traditional approaches do this and certainly not the cookie cutters!

As Gavin and I talk to companies about Phoenix Simulations and show them outputs and outcomes from other clients (where feedback is unanimous that the senior execs all learnt a lot and felt they were better prepared for business and crises), the conversation ultimately turns to engaging other parts of the business. For the first time we can honestly show a link between the crisis management world and training/learning. I have always known it was there and always believed in it but have we really (honestly) been able to show it and defend it? NO!

When I started down the path of Phoenix Simulations, my goal was the change the way that companies and executives viewed their simulation experience. I didn’t realise, however, how much of an impact it would have – with such positive feedback and enthusiasm, even from the most stubborn CEOs! Everyone involved gains a personal understanding of their own strengths, limitations and personal resilience. They are able to translate this into their daily business – a true learning experience.

So, out with the cookie cutter – lets bring back the value and put crisis management and business simulations back on the map of value adding and truly beneficial to the company and the individual.

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