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The Four Traps of Decision Making in a Crisis

April 23, 2021
10:00 AM PDT | 01:00 PM EDT
60 Minutes
Webinar Id:
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Live Version

$149. One Participant
$299. Group Attendees

Recorded Version

$199. One Participant
$399. Group Attendees

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$299 $348   One Participant

Live + Recorded
$599 $698   Group Attendees

Group Attendees: Any number of participants

Recorded Version: Unlimited viewing for 6 months ( Access information will be emailed 24 hours after the completion of live webinar)


Effective crisis response revolves around three key elements: recognizing the crisis, decision making, and acting on those decisions. Of these three, the central element is decision making.

Recognizing the crisis provides the information on which decisions are based while action flows from the decisions you make.

However, decision making is influenced both by how we react to crisis and by certain inherent "traps" that hamper good decision making. These traps are subtle and represent psychological "default" modes that can substitute comfort for critical decision making.

This presentation examines how individuals react to crisis and the effect this reaction has on one's ability to make critical decisions. It looks at key research findings on how we define crisis and on how leaders make decisions under pressure. It identifies the four psychological traps that lead to failure to make good decisions and provides examples of how they can lead to failure. Lastly, it discusses how successful leaders make decisions and offers suggestions on how you can prepare yourself for your role as a crisis leader.

Why you should Attend: A crisis can occur without warning, thrusting an unprepared manager into a role that requires the making of crucial decisions that can affective the very survival of your organization.

The problem is that few managers are trained to understand the nature of crisis and that crisis decision making is not the same as normal business decisions. This presentation is intended to give you both an understanding of how your ability to make decisions will be affected by crisis.

Your success as a crisis manager depends on your understanding of crisis decision making, particularly four common points of failure that lead to poor decisions. These points of failure or “traps” are subtle and represent comfortable psychological default modes make them easy fall prey to. This presentation will help you to identify and avoid these traps.

Decision making in a crisis is not the same as the decisions you make daily. Research suggests that the rational choice problem solving common to business is replaced by one based in pattern recognition. Understanding this and learning how to better prepare to use this model can prepare you to be a better crisis manager.

In this session you will learn:
  • The three phases that every individual passes through when faced with a crisis
  • The three critical elements in crisis response
  • The six-phase Crisis Life Cycle and why your response must adapt over the life of a crisis
  • The five elements of the Conflict Theory Model and its implications for crisis decision making
  • The four traps that can stop your decision making cold
  • How to prepare yourself to be a better leader in a crisis by understanding the pattern recognition problem solving model

Areas Covered in the Session:
  • How you will react in crisis
  • The three critical elements of crisis response
  • Understanding crisis and how response demands change over time
  • The Conflict Theory Model and its implications for crisis decision making
  • The Four Traps of decision making
  • Using pattern recognition to improve your decision making

Who Will Benefit:
  • Chief Financial Officers
  • Human Resource Managers
  • Facility Managers
  • Chief Risk Officers
  • Security Managers

Lucien G. Canton , CEM is an independent management consultant specializing in preparing managers to lead better in crisis. Prior to starting his own company, Mr. Canton served as the Director of Emergency Services for the city and county of San Francisco and as an Emergency Management Programs Specialist and Chief of the Hazard Mitigation Branch for FEMA Region IX.

A popular speaker and lecturer, he is the author of the best-selling Emergency Management: Concepts and Strategies for Effective Programs used as a textbook in many higher education courses. He is a Certified Emergency Manager and a Certified Business Continuity Professional.

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