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COVID-19 Advice From a Communications/Crisis Management Expert - Melissa Hayes

During COVID-19 organisations are identifying expertise gaps in critical areas. As we work through this crisis period we have created a series to focus on these critical areas, with insights from one of our readily available expert Interim Executives.View the full series here.

"Communications is about making meaningful connections. During a time of crisis, those connections become even more meaningful” – Melissa Hayes

Melissa’s Expertise

Melissa has 20 years extensive experience in corporate communications and marketing, with one of her specialist areas being incident and crisis response management, from strategy through to implementation. Having started her career in public relations, Melissa has held key leadership roles for some of the largest B2B industrial organisations across the Region


Melissa has been a central contact in managing crisis response strategies throughout such challenging events as the Victorian bush fires, Queensland floods, tropical cyclones, the H1N1 flu pandemic of 2009 and an on-site response to support the emergency services during the Pike River Coal Mine disaster in New Zealand.

Melissa’s Response and the Outcome

Throughout the above and many other crisis events over the years, Melissa has delivered strategic corporate counsel to C-Suite executives and Boards to ensure effective risk mitigation and manage corporate reputation. Melissa also developed a comprehensive multi-tiered media training course to assist the breadth of employee stakeholders to respond effectively to unexpected crisis events.

An Example of Crisis Communication in Action

Having been at the centre of ongoing crisis events relating to gas misuse (especially balloon gas inhalation), whilst in one of her previous roles, Melissa rallied industry members to unite in a social campaign to educate on the dangers of the balloon gas ‘Mickey Mouse’ voice and subsequently became the industry spokesperson on the subject. This started a wave for a new proactive approach to similar communications across the industry about the correct use of gas throughout applications. 

“Unfortunately, crisis events do happen. What makes or breaks an organisation, though, is the ability to act both appropriately and authentically with all it’s stakeholders in response. Through this current period we are certainly seeing businesses shape potentially very different futures for themselves, their employees and their ongoing relationships with their customers, just by the way in which they are responding”
– Melissa Hayes

If you have any questions or would like to hear more contact one of our helpful team today.