The Art of Conflict and Crisis [National Assembly Recap]

Courtesy of Skye Clayton, Dixie State University

Session: Special Session: The Art of Conflict and Crisis and Spring Exhibition

Presenter: Dr. Raquel Perez, Aileen Izquierdo, and Heather Radi–Bermudez

Recap: At the beginning of the session, the presenters clarified the difference between a conflict and a crisis. A conflict is the inevitable incompatibility of goals while a crisis jeopardizes an organization’s reputation. The process to successfully navigate a crisis begins before a crisis occurs. In the proactive stage, PR professionals develop potential messages and strategies to handle the crisis. The next stage is strategic planning that minimizes risk. Then, following a crisis, a reactive response with both internal and external messaging is required. The final stage is the recovery, in which the affected organization should make sincere changes. Strategic crisis management is necessary for organizations to recover from crises.


  • When in the midst of a crisis, it is important to remember that you are dealing with human beings.
  • It is important for PR professionals to attend meetings with legal counsel and to ensure all messaging is presented in a uniform voice.
  • Following a crisis, it is important to enact sincere and honest change in the affected organization.
  • A major crisis is never forgotten. Anniversaries and other events will be consistent reminders.

Ellie Wnek is a junior Integrated Strategic Communication major at the University of Kentucky. She currently serves as Vice President for the UK PRSSA chapter. Follow her on Twitteror on Linkedin.

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