GREENSBORO, N.C. (6/17/09)--Common sense at lightning speed is the way to handle communications in a crisis, according to Rick Amme, who recently provided North Carolina credit unions some tips on how to handle crisis communications. Amme, a communications consultant, spoke during the Governmental Affairs Forum at the North Carolina Credit Union League’s Annual Meeting, the league said (Weekly Update June 15). During a crisis, many companies are “too slow” to identify that they have a problem, Amme said. “It’s better to give the media something than nothing and then become roadkill,” he said. At the annual meeting, Amme told the story about one of his financial services clients who accidentally sent monthly statements to some customers with the cancelled checks of others inserted. By not responding to a news reporter’s inquiry quickly enough, the client received a very negative live TV news segment, which included interviews with angry customers, he told the league. Informing stakeholders is key to retaining trust. “People will want to know when you learned about the problem and what you did to fix it,” Amme said. To see a video of Amme speaking, use the link.