Crisis Plan

Natalie Fisher

COMM 642

29 June 2012

A. The company that encountered this problem was Exxon the oil company. This company was one of the largest companies in the US during the 1980’s. This company was bringing in around 80 billion dollars in revenue. This company had a CEO by the name of Lawrence G. Rawl, and Rawl had been with Exxon for 37 years before stepping into a leadership role as he did as the CEO of the company.

B. The crisis that Exxon came about was a huge oil spill on March 24, 1989. This oil spill took over the coast of the harbor of Prince William Sound. This oil spill happened in the late hours of the night when the captain who had been with Exxon for 21 years stepped away and let somebody else who was not as educated take the wheel of the ship. The captain simply said to go straight for 3 minutes then turn right so he could avoid the reef. He waited too long to turn right and ended up hitting rock. It states in the text book that the man yelled “we are in serious trouble”.

C. There were so many opportunities for Exxon to have strength and positive opportunities but all they saw were weakness and threats. The CEO of Exxon refused to go to the site of the spill and handed it off to somebody else to deal with which in return made Exxon look very unprofessional and not appealing to the eye of Americans. The clean-up relief did not go as planned and was ruining all the great sea life in the beautiful waters. Fishermen were not able to go out to sea. Exxon had a chance that they could have still came off on top of this huge disaster but because of only supplying disappointments and not answers is what made it such a huge crisis.

D. After such a disaster that was portrayed by Exxon their CEO eventually made a statement to the public through the television informing them what was all going to be taken place during the clean-up and what chemicals were going to be used. Ten days after the spill Exxon finally was able to purchase all the materials that were needed to do the full clean up but the full cleanup still would not be able to be done until 1992.

E. America was not very happy. There were ton of people clipping up their Exxon credit cards, calling into Exxon and what not. America could tell that they were not prepared and was disgusted by the way that their own CEO would not make a statement. They did not understand why people were pointing fingers and why they could not get the spill cleaned up in a fast manor.

F. My outlook on how Exxon handled this is not a very positive outlook. In some ways I would love to pat Exxon on the back and tell them they did a nice job in handling it but there is so many other ways that I know they handled wrong and that is why America was so upset with this company. If you are going to be a CEO of a company you need to be ready to handle whatever is brought to you from your company. To hand off your duties and refuse to go to such a horrid sight that your company created was very unprofessional. I also think that it should not have taken ten days to get the right equipment to clean up the spill. By the ten days there had been so much sea life ruined that it was a horrid scene. I believe that Exxon had enough experience that they could have been able to come out on top of this disaster but due to its unprofessionalism and ability not to relate to what the public is feeling they must write this in their books as a huge disaster in the 1989.

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