Strategy and tactical planning should go into the release of important corporate announcements. The content and the timing of a company’s information can have serious financial implications, and also largely influence how a wide audience perceives the news. As Dow Chemical learned last week, when something goes awry with your best laid plans, it’s crucial to react quickly.

Dow had reportedly planned to reveal its third-quarter earnings on Thursday morning along with a press release announcing a company restructuring eliminating roughly 2,400 jobs and closing 20 manufacturing plants. Due to an unnamed error, a draft of the press release was apparently sent to Bloomberg News on Tuesday evening. Moving swiftly, Dow released both the official layoff announcement and earnings report that night, posting the press release to the company’s website and on Business Wire.

Pivoting quickly is critical in communicating effectively, especially in a crisis. In Dow’s case, the early release pushed them to confront the layoffs and restructuring head-on. It is never ideal to be caught off guard, but Dow did the right thing by moving quickly to provide the controversial information rather than trying to cover it up.

Red Banyan Group specializes in helping businesses large and small successfully convey the right information to the key constituencies that matter most. In addition, we work closely with our clients to pivot fast in high-stakes situations where inaction or the wrong decision can have devastating consequences.

After all, when it comes to crisis communication/ crisis PR an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.