Crisis Management


Man has witnessed multiple crises, whether economic, social, environmental or security since the Old Testament until the borders of our current century, and they were part of the local and international scene, so I found crisis management as an aspect of human interaction with the emergency or critical crises that faced man’s life since he tried to confront and oppose nature. . It was not known as crisis management, rather it had other names such as: good management, leadership ingenuity, or decision-making, represented in more than one experience, including the Greek experience, which realized the importance of direct communication and dialogue with public opinion after the Pelionian War that occurred between Athens and Sparta. The Greek philosopher and historian Theodines this war as a turning point in Greek civilization.


The concept of crisis management language and idiomatically:

Definition of management language and convention:

Language: It is a feminine noun that is not mentioned that brings together a peaceful group of departments, and its meaning is rotation. An example of you turning the handle before the door opens, that is, you have to turn it, and it is said: You turned so-and-so on the matter: if you tried to bind him and turn him around the matter: if you asked him to leave it, and management: deliberation and abuse without delay.

Idiomatically:The definitions of management varied according to the definition of the definition’s point of view and the logic that starts with it. The pioneer of scientific management, Fredrick Taylor, defined management as “knowing exactly what you want men to teach and then making sure that they do their work in the best and cheapest way.” Henri Fayol defined it as “an act that involves forecasting, planning, organizing, commanding, coordination and control.” Jhon F Mee considers management as “the art of obtaining the maximum results with the least effort in order to achieve maximum popularity and happiness for both the employer and the employees while providing the best possible service to the community.” As for Dr. Khalil Al Shamaa, in his book Principles of Management, he defined it as ”

Through these multiple definitions, we know management as that activity that aims to achieve a kind of coordination and cooperation between the efforts of a number of individuals in order to achieve a general goal. In other words, it is directing the activity of a group of individuals towards a common goal and organizing and coordinating their efforts to achieve the goal.

The concept of crisis in language and idiomatically: The first origins of using the word crisis go back to ancient Greek medicine, and this word was used to denote the existence of an important turning point, and the existence of a fateful moment in the development of a disease, and this point results, either the patient is cured within a short period or his death .

Linguistically, the term crisis (Crises) is derived from the Greek word (Krisis), which means the moment of decision, as it refers to the meaning of sudden change and often towards the worse. This term is also mentioned in Chinese in the form of two words, wei-ji, which is a word consisting of two syllables, danger and opportunity, meaning that the crisis involves a danger that must be avoided and it also involves an opportunity that must be seized. In the Arabic language, the medieval dictionary defines a crisis as distress and drought. The Arabs say that it is:

A dangerous, critical and turning point situation.

– Unstable conditions in political, economic or global affairs. Which is about to bring about a decisive change.

A sudden change in a chronic disease, either to improvement or to worsening.

In Webster’s Dictionary it is defined as “a critical and unstable period or malfunctioning”.

As for the terminology: the definition of the crisis differed according to the point of view or school in which it is considered, so economics defined the crisis as an accidental economic situation that affects the achievement of national goals that arise from a global, regional or internal economic situation, and it requires making all efforts to overcome it.

Sociology also defined it as a cessation of the organization’s and expected events and disturbance of habits and customs, which requires rapid change to restore balance and form habits more appropriate to the new conditions imposed by the events of the crisis.

The term crisis has also been used in the research of psychiatrists, to denote the severe psychological repercussions on the individual and his behavior, on the group, and also to refer to the crisis of identity.

While the significance of the crisis from the administrative perspective has been defined by many definitions from the point of view of administrators, Al-Khudairi defines it as “a situation faced by the organization’s management, in which events are accelerated and the causes are intertwined with results, during which the decision-maker loses the ability to control what is happening inside and outside the organization, which affects in a way. Notable for the organization’s performance and future. ”

Izz Al-Din Al-Razim defines the crisis as “an extraordinary situation that leaves a definite impact on the course of ordinary affairs, disrupting the routine of life and work and violates the rules, regulations and the basic structure of work.” The crisis, as seen by Badr Shihab, refers to “a fundamental defect in the normal course of the life of an individual, group or organization, and the crisis arises when an unexpected situation occurs for which the individual or group is not prepared for it.”

Definition of crisis management is an additional compound term:

Academic interest in the study of crisis management began with the beginning of the sixties of the twentieth century, accompanied by the emergence of major crises that faced society, as the crises of international conflicts and the Cold War escalated, specifically, when US Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara in the John-Kennedy Administration used this term for the first time During the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, when the confrontation between the United States of America and the Soviet Union allied with Cuba was among the events of the Cold War and it was one of the most intense confrontations, as this crisis almost led to the establishment of nuclear war, so McNamara described it as managing a serious emergency. Then the interest in studying the term and moving from the political framework to the social and then the economic and administrative took place. Research attempts and studies appeared to develop definitions of the concept of crisis management, and we find among them:

Fahd Ahmad Al-Shaalan defined crisis management as a special administrative process that would produce a strategic response to crisis situations, through a group of pre-selected administrators who use their skills in addition to special procedures in order to reduce losses to a minimum, referring to the crisis management team. Muhammad Muhanna believes that crisis management means how to overcome crises with various scientific and administrative tools, avoid their negatives and benefit from their positive aspects. The science of crisis management is the science of managing balances, monitoring the movement and trends of power, adapting to different variables, and researching their effects in all fields. Nawaf Qutaish knows it, as it is a specific technique or method used when facing emergency situations, dealing with crises that must be confronted, and planning the method of confrontation early, based on assumptions based on information that predict the occurrence of such crises.

Based on these previous definitions of crisis management and its establishment, we define a procedural definition of it according to which crisis management is an integrated administrative process aimed at overcoming critical and critical moments by defining, studying and predicting its condition using scientific and administrative tools in order to deal with it with the least consequences, avoid its negatives and benefit from its advantages .

Types of crises:

(Al-Khudairi) indicated that crises have different types and divisions, and no matter how many and different types, it can be divided as follows:

First: Classifying crises in terms of the formative stage: the crisis in the stage of birth / the crisis in the stage of growth / the crisis in the stage of maturity / the crisis in the stage of decline / the crisis in the stage of disappearance.

Second: Classification of crises in terms of the number of their recurrence: crises of a recurring cyclical nature / crises of a sudden, random and infrequent nature.

Third: Classifying crises in terms of the depth of the crisis: shallow, shallow, marginal crises / deep pervasive, fundamental crises, with structural impact.

Fourth: Classifying crises in terms of their severity: violent, unbridled crises that are difficult to confront. They are crises that occur suddenly and violently and take the character of a thunderous explosion.
Quiet mild crises that are easy to encounter. They are shallow crises that are not deep and marginal in impact.

Fifth:  Classification of crises in terms of comprehensiveness and impact: general crises that are comprehensive to all parts of the administrative entity in which the crisis occurred / special crises that are confined to one or more parts.

Sixth: Classification of crises in terms of topic or focus of the crisis:

– Material crises: They are crises of an economic, physical, and quantitative nature, which are measurable, and can be studied and dealt with financially, with tools commensurate with the nature of the crisis.

Moral crises: They are crises of a psychological, personal, and intangible nature, and their dimensions cannot be grasped easily, and the crisis cannot be seen or heard, but rather can be felt.

Crises combining the two previous types.

Stages and models of crisis management:

If the organization fails to abort the crisis, it has no choice but to manage the life cycle of the crisis, at a faster rate than the rate of its exacerbation and development. Some writers have provided practical models for managing the crisis to reduce its disadvantages, and benefit from its advantages. The following are some of these models:

First: Steve Albrecht’s model

The life cycle of a crisis in its relationship with the organization is divided into the following stages through which a crisis can be managed.

1- The pre-crisis stage: The administration’s efforts are focused on performing the following tasks: –
Surveying the environment and sensing potential crises that may explode in the future.
Collecting information about these crises or problems and assessing their severity.
Take the necessary preventive measures to prevent the birth of the crisis.
Learn from others’ experiences.

2. The aggravation of the crisis phase: worsening crisis on its own without the need to help management, but there are some administrative environments that prefer crises without other environments characterized by these tags results of the following:
-daf networks of communication between departments and work sites.
Slow decision-making and bureaucracy.
Weakness of belonging, fading enthusiasm, and indifference.
Neglecting to study competitors and lack of clarity of strategic goals.

3- The crisis management phase: It can also be called the “containment of the crisis” stage, and it includes the following tasks:
Recognition of the crisis. Allocating specific resources and a specific team to directly deal with the crisis Mobilizing efforts and supporting foreign aid. Developing an emergency plan to overcome the crisis radically and quickly.

4- The post-crisis phase: –
Learning from previous experiences and updating the crisis management plan based on the recent crisis, in order to lay the foundations for developing a new plan for preventing crises and introducing amendments to the existing plan.
Evaluating the impact of the crisis on relationships and communications with customers and external parties.
Evaluating the impact of the crisis on internal relations and the culture of the work environment.

Second: Johnston & Stepanavich

Researchers William P. Johnston and Paul L. Stepanovich presented a practical model for crisis management, consisting of three stages through which crisis management in the organization goes through:

at this stage, the organization must plan for potential crises by relying on preventive methods in preparing to face the crisis, and these preventive methods include linking crisis planning to the strategic planning process of the organization as a whole, as well as forming a specialized team for crisis management and providing appropriate training and development programs for team members .

Acting as
at this stage, the organization faces a real crisis that requires everyone to work on dealing with it effectively and efficiently, and the support of the senior management for the efforts made is the starting point for this successful deal with the crisis. It is also important at this stage to have good communication channels to ensure coordination of work between the various parties in the organization and direct it towards managing the crisis effectively and coming out with the least losses.

Learning learning
This stage is considered an opportunity for the organization by taking advantage of the crises it faced in the past to raise its capacity and efficiency in dealing with crises that may occur in the future.

Third: Pearson & Metrov model – C. Person & I. Mitroff

This model is one of the most famous and clearest models presented by the researchers. This model consists of five stages that crisis management goes through, namely:

1- The stage of detecting early warning signals The crisis sends a series of early warning signals or symptoms that may predict the possibility of a crisis, and unless sufficient attention is paid to these signals, it is very likely that the crisis will occur, and early warning signals represent a problem where managers receive many types Real and important signals, in addition to that, each crisis sends its own warning signals, and it may be difficult to distinguish between the signals for each crisis separately, and therefore one of the important functions of the crisis management team is to supervise the processes of detecting, tracking and analyzing warning signals.

2- Preparation and prevention stage The organization must have adequate preparations and methods to prevent crises, and the goal of crisis management at this stage is to try to prevent the occurrence of the crisis or reduce its severity, by developing different scenarios for expected crisis events and distributing roles in a way that achieves the main goal From
crisis management, which is to deal with the crisis efficiently and effectively.

3- The stage of containing or reducing the damage. Sometimes it is difficult to prevent crises from occurring. This stage aims to prepare the means to help contain the effects resulting from the crisis, and the importance of isolating the crisis at this stage clearly shows, by taking measures that limit the damage And it prevents it from spreading to other parts of the organization that are not yet affected.

4- The recovery phase This phase includes the preparation and implementation of short and long term (ready and pre-selected) programs. The recovery phase includes several aspects, including: Attempting to recover tangible and intangible assets, which have been lost and it is noticed that managers predetermine the elements and processes, and individuals who are of a degree of importance, to carry out the daily operations, and are able to complete this phase efficiently and the organizations targeted for crises may commit a serious mistake by focusing The internal operations by ignoring the impact of the crisis on the external parties, or taking care of that at a late time. Usually, the group operating at this stage suffers from something of excessive enthusiasm, as the group rallies and coalesces in the face of a specific danger and a more specific task.

5- Learning stage This stage includes retrieving events and studying them in-depth and thoroughly and drawing lessons and lessons learned from them, in order to raise the organization’s efficiency in dealing with future crises, and then generalize those lessons to all parties that have a relationship with the organization.

Fourth: Al Shaalan model

Fahad Al-Shaalan presented a model for crisis management that would deal with crises that institutions are exposed to, reduce their negative effects, and benefit from their positive effects. This model consists of three stages, namely:

– The pre-crisis stage: mitigation and preparation:  This stage represents taking certain preventive measures, in order to prevent the occurrence of the crisis as possible, or at least mitigate its effects, and these measures include activities, such as: analyzing potential risks, estimating the available capabilities, making use of experiences The precedent in achieving a higher degree of caution to prevent crises.

The crisis phase: confrontation and response
This phase is a real test for the pre-prepared plans, equipment and training that preceded the crisis. The more effort exerted in the previous phase was sufficient, which led to the success of crisis management in the confrontation phase.

– Post-crisis phase: re-balancing
at this stage, the organization tries to remedy the effects of the crisis by rebuilding what was destroyed, setting controls for not being repeated, and making use of the crisis as lessons for dealing with the future.

Fifth: The Momani model

The writer Nael Moumni adds that the science of crisis management revolves around four main axes in order to apply it effectively, namely:

1- The mitigation phase:  The mitigation phase includes measures aimed at eliminating the causes of the crisis, reducing the possibility of its occurrence and the extent of its impact on humans and the environment. This stage is considered one of the most important and effective stages in dealing with crises at the lowest possible cost. By moderation, we mean to prevent the crisis from occurring before it occurs.

2- Preparedness stage:  The preparedness (precautionary) stage includes measures aimed at protecting lives and property from the impact of risks that cannot be completely prevented through palliative measures. And precautionary measures are needed if there is an imminent danger, and the necessary plans, procedures and resources must be available that must be prepared appropriately before the danger occurs, in order to contribute to an effective response to reduce potential harm.

3- Response  phase : The third phase of dealing with crisis management includes the response phase, and it starts from the prediction of the arrival of the danger and ends with the stability of the situation after the end of the danger.

4- The recovery phase:  It is the last phase of the crisis management stages and starts from the end of the response phase until the return of the society or institution to the normal situation it was in before the crisis occurred, and the duration of this phase varies according to many factors, including the nature of the crisis, the material capabilities and the presence of manpower necessary to restore conditions Back to normal.

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SAKHRI Mohamed
SAKHRI Mohamed

I hold a Bachelor's degree in Political Science and International Relations in addition to a Master's degree in International Security Studies. Alongside this, I have a passion for web development. During my studies, I acquired a strong understanding of fundamental political concepts and theories in international relations, security studies, and strategic studies.

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