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Five Significant Steps for Crisis Management in IT By @JeremyCalvey | @CloudExpo #Cloud
It's time to have some boosting plans for your company's growth
Mar. 9, 2016 07:28 AM
Started with your new company? Great! Now it's time to have some boosting plans for your company's growth. But as your company grows, you will have to take care of the emergencies that might occur at some point that warrants crisis management in IT. The crisis can be in any form - natural disaster, data breach or product malfunction and you might be the entity for it to happen. In case of disaster weather, sysadmins need to take the hot seat if the user machines aren't working quickly, since it's a massive task. But as said, people only remember how you handled it and not the mistake they committed.
Below are the five steps you need to take during the crisis:
Dilute the Condition
You might have preplanned the business continuity strategy to follow during crisis. If you don't have it, ensure that you plan it ASAP. There are several templates available for business continuity plans in IT from which you can choose one. If you simply need to install a patch, put a server back online or update hardware to fix the crisis then it's better to solve it immediately. Crises are top priority and so, different from the issue tickets and also many users keep on calling until the issue is resolved. And, the sooner the crisis is resolved, the less it stays on the user's mind.
Learn to Apologize
If the support from your staff was faulty, it's better to accept the blame but keep these three goals in mind - honesty, regret and promise to change. If you apologize honestly and personally like Mark Zuckerberg did, "We really messed this one up", in 2006 after a messy News Feed implementation. It is often blamed for things that they aren't done by them; still you need to apologize that too with some different reason behind it. The user experience enables you to solve the problem without forbearing the blame you need to reject. There might be a time when people need you to listen and empathized with, while discovering why the problem occurred.
Convert the Solution
The CIO Executive Council's survey - Power of Effective IT Communication, 44% of IT leaders are a bit dissatisfied as their team is unable to communicate within the organization. This doesn't decrease the problems or at least the number of those perceived during the disaster. In this case, you need to find on where the communication gap is between the IT and the workplace and display the information in a meaningful format. How to do this? It's simply by translating the issue into such format that a non-technical friend or neighbor might understand. Here's a small example -
The real situation - "As per the WhatsUpGold network monitor, all of the wireless access points are suffering with some problems. Tracking down the places where such WAPs are located along with finding the switch ports they are connected to and check the switch logs."
The email sent by you - "Hello all, Your Wi-Fi issues have been observed by the operations team and is working on those. Request you to plug into the wired connection at your desk until the issue is solved. Thank you for your patience."
Still the problem persists? Send the message off to COO or CIO to make sure the solution is cleared to all.
Validate the Details
There's definitely some secret behind effective communication. The secret is to identify the person you communicate and tailor your message to the staff that requires the details pertaining to their machine. This can be easily done by backing up the message with data. If network overcapacity is responsible for outage for instance, declaring to the company that high amount of bandwidth was used is tough without appropriate evidence. If you show transparency to the people, they might trust your department.
Rebuild Your Value
After successful crisis elimination, the distrust still may remain. As many IT experts prefer to work practically instead of verbal communication, they don't get the desired credit for the correct problem resolution. During week or month of crisis, it's essential to rebuild the trust by collaborating things like network uptime for the staff to get assured that the problem won't reoccur. After time passes, explain to both the company as well as leadership and if possible to the customers how your IT team resolved the problem. It's important for all to know your team's ability otherwise, it won't be invisible.
At last, memorize to create a business continuity plan with your team. If you share accomplishments via intranet, you can make the resolution quite attainable when you face such challenge next time. You need to accept the credit when there's some enhancement in productivity too. Then it may be the faster load speeds as it has the connection with the server space that's recently created. Though the crisis gets forgotten, think in a positive direction about the work of helpdesk at the first.
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