When $*!^ hits the fan. A guide to keeping your cool under pressure.

When $*!^ hits the fan. A guide to keeping your cool under pressure.

If you’ve ever experienced a crisis in the office then you will be able to relate to how all fellow office professionals in the Facebook and Instagram offices felt this morning.

Tight chest, head swirling, feeling sick, what feels like a million phone calls and emails to answer. These are just some of the instant things that happen to us when something goes really wrong.

Thing is, we’ve all been there right?

Here’s our favourite tips for keeping your cool under pressure. Don’t forget to share yours in the comments below, because after all, we’re in this together!

Take some deep breaths

It may sound pretty basic, but, the first thing that happens when everything goes pear shaped is that the body pumps out adrenalin and what becomes apparent is that our breathing gets faster and more shallow.

It’s important here that you stop, take a few moments to re center and take some deep breaths to feed your body the oxygen it needs for you to work out a plan to fix it.

In the words of one of my favourite speakers, Marie Forleo,

“Everything is figuraboutable”.

That’s right. Panicking and shutting down isn’t going to solve anything. Nor is reacting in a negative way.

Keep your mind open to solutions and look for ways to fix it in a timely manner.

Collaborate and work together

No matter the  size of the crisis, collaboration and working together is going to be important. No idea, solution or input is wasted so speak up and don’t be shy. This could be your time to really shine. It’s also the time you will really need to lean on your network, so be sure to keep in mind those that will be able to help you.

Even if it’s not helping you directly with the crisis there’s still a massive list of things to do. 9 times out of 10 there’s always a fellow office professional wanting to step up and learn what it is you do, so this is a good chance to delegate some tasks that could easily be handled by a fellow colleague.

Keep communication open

Chances are, if someone internally doesn’t pick it up first it will be a hundreds, thousands and in Facebooks and Instagrams case millions of customers who want to know what the heck is going on.

Dependent on the size of your organisation it may or may not fall on your desk to communicate the problem at hand, however, make sure you find a way to ensure it happens. A simple email, SMS and social posts to notify internal and external stakeholders is a good start.

Keeping communication open with everyone will create transparency and in turn keep trust that something is being done to fix the problem. I wonder if Facebook could have added a notification pop up on their site to let us know what was going on?

Get a plan

Once you’ve looked at options for a solution and have a way to fix the problem, put a plan together. Listing actions and those responsible for them will make it so much easier to monitor and manage where every stage is up to.   

Needless to say. When it’s all done and dusted, it will outline where key players sit to ensure it doesn’t happen again and will also be the template and plan to manage the crisis when it strikes again or if something like it happens, because chances are it will!


If there’s a hotline by phone, social media or email people are going to contact it. After all they need to know what is going on too so they can work around it for their own scenario.

Set up some automated responses through these avenues to respond right away. If you are responsible for this and aren’t too sure how to best set it up then get in touch or ask everyone on our Facebook or LinkedIn group.

We’re all here to support one another so if you’ve got a hot tip or need some help then start the conversation below.

Here’s hoping you are crisis free this week!

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