Having a boat before the flood strikes will save you. Having a sail will take you places. : A qualitative study on how an effective crisis communication is impacted by intercultural competence, crisis leadership and social media.
Abstract: Thirteen qualitative interviews have been conducted with key individuals who have profound knowledge and experience in the subject of crisis communication. The thesis used a theory testing approach and highlights the main issues regarding the influence of intercultural competence in crisis information, and to what extent social media channels are used for crisis communication. Also, it covers how the leadership during crises affects the communication from the perspectives of the key individuals. In this empirical investigation, the analytical method of thematization has been used in order to select essential themes throughout the qualitative interviews. These themes have been compared to the relevant theories within the subject - crisis communication, intercultural competence, and social media in crisis situations. The emerging conclusions from this study were the importance of pre-existing relations between organizations and authorities in crisis situations, and the amplifications of crisis communication through crisis networks operating between organizations. Another conclusion was that proactive crisis communication plans need to be of a consise and general design to be practical in crisis situations. Furthermore, one conclusion was that most organizations according to the interviewees were aware of the absence of intercultural competence, but due to lack of resources this was not prioritized. The last conclusion was that social media channels have a high interest level during crisis situations, but was seldom used to a large extent during crises
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