I’m excited to announce the publication and release of Prepare for Crisis—Plan to Thrive, The Inside Story of How One Company Did It Right, a book that I co-authored withDiane Schmalensee, President of Schmalensee Partners and long-time adviser to service organizations wanting to improve customer experience and brand loyalty.
I began writing it during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic and completed it recently. The timing of its release is ideal, as we navigate through the difficult waters of our second year of the pandemic. I shared with readers how Northeast Delta Dental met diverse challenges, navigated them successfully, and continues to thrive. The book encourages other businesses and nonprofits and shares insights to help them manage their present and future crises.
Throughout the pandemic, Northeast Delta Dental has primarily focused on providing relief to our stakeholders and the communities we serve rather than making money. As a result, all management decisions were made with the safety and health of our employees and stakeholders in the forefront of our minds.
Thankfully, through many years of ongoing training and development, using Malcolm Baldrige quality principles and servant leadership as our management approach, we built an infrastructure that was extremely solid going into the pandemic and helped us emerge strong. Admittedly, our challenges taught us lessons about what we could have done sooner or differently, and I share what we did well and not so well so that other leaders can also learn from the current crisis and be better prepared for the next one.
The book is divided into three sections that tell how to build a strong foundation based on best management principles before a crisis, how to use that foundation to act wisely during a crisis, and how to renew the foundation with lessons learned emerging from a crisis. A key factor in Northeast Delta Dental’s recovery is our consistent communications with our employees and external stakeholders. So an appendix gives examples of emails sent to employees, board members, insurance regulators, participating dentists, customers, brokers and benefit consultants, as well as the community organizations we support.
If you’re interested in reading Prepare for Crisis, it’s available at two independent bookstores, Gibson’s Bookstore in Concord, and Bookery in Manchester, as well as on Amazon. After you read it, I’d appreciate it if you leave a comment, because your feedback is important to me.