The travel and tourism sector will
be challenged by adversity on a regular basis and the Caribbean tourism
industry must be prepared to communicate effectively during and after a
crisis, a leading media expert has advised.
“Crises are inevitable and you have to be prepared. Crisis communication is
preparing for the inevitable rather than reacting to the inevitable,” said Andria
Hall, president of SpeakEasy M.E.D.I.A., Inc., a New Jersey, USA-based media and
public presentation consulting firm specialising in life-changing workshops, media
coaching and broadcast quality productions.
“Whether you are a hotelier, cruise line operator or housekeeper, you need to
understand that whenever trouble comes there is a way to effectively manage it so
that you minimise damage and maximise results,” she added.
Hall is an award-winning broadcast journalist with more than 20 years experience in
television, which includes anchor with CNN/USA and New York’s NBC affiliate, as well
as a national news correspondent with FOX. She will moderate a MasterClass on Crisis
Communications for the Tourism Industry at the 28th Annual Caribbean Tourism
Conference (CTC-28) in St. Thomas, USVI, this month.
“You can have the best plan in the world but if you can’t tell someone in a way that
they believe you, you don’t have trust, you don’t have credibility. If you can speak
eloquently but you don’t have a plan people still won’t believe you,” Hall said.
“It’s about marrying effective and transparent communications after you have
established a plan so that when the inevitable happens you are not caught off guard
and you can turn a crisis into an opportunity.”