I was struck by the contrast between two stories over the weekend. In the first it seems that tourism to India is down by 25%; and in the second it seems that ready meal sales remain stable. What, I hear you say, is the link between these two? The answer is that they have both been in the news due to criminal activity. In the case of India, there has been the very high profile rape and murder of a woman, which has surfaced a whole range of related issues about Indian society; and with regards ready meals, there has been the horse meat scandal, about which we have blogged.
What this demonstrates is how unpredictable the outcome of an unexpected event might be. At first sight, it might have been thought that the terrible event in India would not affect tourism, after all no tourist was involved in the incident. Whereas the horsemeat scandal achieved such media coverage that everyone must have heard about it. Yet it is the former that appears to have had a significant impact, whereas food manufacturers are confident that they have ridden out the storm.
The lesson to be learned from this is that any event can become a crisis (ie a ‘turning point’) and hence in managing the outcome, you must identify the worst possible scenario and assume it will happen – unless you take all appropriate action to prevent it.