Chaotic Crisis Management
In every Chaotic Crisis the most important factor is the cohesion of the Human Team. All Businesses or Political Entities which have succeeded in keeping Man at the center of focus has successfully emerged from from the hot chaotic phase of crisis while keeping its operational capacity functional. It is always possible to quickly replace material equipment which has been destroyed, but it will take a lot longer to rebuild the staff into a cohesive Team. The outcome : a business with no staff will dissolve and the political entity will not be able to to manage the reconstruction phase.
Resiliency of Businesses or Political entities is achieved through a Continuity Plan which is regularly tested in exercises, by Human Teams. In a Chaotic Crisis the underlying critical infrastructure necessary for the functioning of the Plan is damaged or otherwise unavailable. Trying blindly to apply a Plan, which is not matched to actual events, coupled with the lack of capacity to adapt and innovate will transform a normal crisis into a true catastrophic event.
Exercises are an inherent part of Crisis Management Doctrine. But there is a great reluctance to include inconceivable events into exercise scenarios. When this was done for large scale exercises in the USA the result was a predictable loss of control by State and Federal Entities. Lessons Learned from actual past crisis invariably indicate that this “loss of control” is a common factor.
Exercises are absolutely essential to learn to manage a normal crisis. Lessons Learned, from big crisis scenarios exercises in the USA, indicate that the underlying Plans are not necessarily helpful to learn to manage a Chaotic Crisis. Nevertheless, exercises are extremely useful to train the first-responders to know each other and to communicate efficiently, face to face or voice to voice. This seamless communication capacity is the most essential element for efficient Chaotic Crisis Management.
To improve the response capacity to Chaotic Crisis Plans and associates Exercises must be designed to develop the following Human qualities :
- the common sense to be applied while the individual is drowning in the whirlwind of external events,
- the ability to act without knowing the right answers, i.e. to Think out of The Box,
- the capacity to adapt on the go,
- the capacity to innovate,
- the ability to communicate Man to Man with a Staff which is under severe stress (not in a military sense).