The collapse in December 2008 of Bernard Madoff’s investment company – and the unprecedented damage and destruction a number of foundations suffered in its wake – not only rattled the philanthropic sector, but left many organizations scrambling to answer unexpected (and unwanted) questions from the news media, donors and others. One of the stark lessons from this upheaval is that your organization always should have a current crisis communications plan in place.
by Douglas Gould and Jennifer Hahn:
The financial crisis of 2008 roiled the nonprofit community, inflicting lasting damage on thousands of organizations and causing them to seek cover. But then just as the year was coming to a close, a scandal of gargantuan proportions threatened already beleaguered nonprofits and some foundations that were caught completely off guard. Bernard Madoff’s alleged “Ponzi scheme” caught many by surprise, shuttering some foundations and causing many to reach for life support. This turn of events has sent one powerful message – Be Prepared! In a scandal or disaster of any proportion, having a lifeline handy like a crisis plan can mean survival and growth.
So, what can serve as a lifeline? A well mapped-out plan for navigating through the kinds of crises or bad news that any philanthropy or nonprofit might face at one time or another.
Here’s the complete article.