Crisis preparedness trends 2019

With threats evolving, the best defence is a crisis-fit plan, part of PwC’s 22nd CEO Survey trends series

Have a plan

Although the landscape is volatile right now, there is an opportunity to manage risk intelligently. A company’s state of preparedness can dramatically affect outcomes and the benefits can be material: one study shows that companies perceived to have responded well to a crisis experienced on average a 22% premium in share value*.

*Source: Knight/Pretty

"Nearly 60% of CEOs say they are ‘extremely’ or ‘somewhat concerned’ about their readiness to respond to crisis."

PwC’s 22nd Annual Global CEO Survey, 2019

In crisis, companies must ground their response in facts—and get those facts quickly. Yet the shortfall between the data that leaders need to make decisions and the data they actually get has barely budged in the past ten years.

Consider this: 87% of CEOs state that data about the risks to which the business is exposed is critical; yet only 22% say they get the comprehensive risk data they need.

How can you close this gap?


Five steps to crisis confidence

Instead of trying to prepare for every possible future scenario, ask yourself: What are the top three to five threats I need to most worry about today? Have a strategy for those — backed up with a crisis playbook, a strategic cross-functional response team and workforce training. Then, should a different threat prevail, you will already have developed the muscle memory and the internal cohesion to handle it optimally.

Crisis confidence and muscle memory cannot be gained by checking boxes, no matter how robust a plan looks on paper. It takes careful preparation, stress-testing, and a healthy respect for the unexpected. There are five essential steps.

Contact us

Kristin Rivera

Global Forensics Leader, Partner, PwC United States

Tel: +1 (415) 302-3428 

Dave Stainback

Principal, US Territory Crisis Leader, PwC United States

Marie-Chantal Dréau 

Forensics, Partner, PwC Canada

Tel: +1 (514) 205-5407

Follow us