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Crisis Communications and Media Training Masterclass

Be prepared when disaster strikes.

Disaster will strike your company and it's a question of when, not if. But when that crisis arrives, will you know immediately what to do? In this modern, social-media led world, events can overwhelm a communications team with frightening speed. How should you try to control such an event and what plans do you need to have in place? 

Two of South Africa's best-known business journalists, Chris Gibbons and Francis Herd, will guide you through the basics, discuss the crafting of stories and messages, reveal the latest academic research on the topic and workshop a theoretical disaster with you. This one-day GIBS Masterclass is a must for both communications professionals and executives who want to be prepared when crisis strikes.

Programme agenda:

  • Why we need media training;
  • The fundamentals of crisis management;
  • Crafting stories;
  • Case studies – what they did wrong, what they did right;
  • The role of leadership and dealing with journalists;
  • Crisis management workshop; and
  • How to stop a crisis before it begins.


Francis Herd is an experienced radio and television broadcaster with a focus on economic and business news, and she is currently the face of prime-time news on SABC. She began her career at Talk Radio 702, was a long time anchor at eNCA, and joined the SABC to launch a business show. Francis holds an honours degree in Politics and an MBA. Her thesis dealt with relationships between business leaders and journalists, and how these impact the fortunes of a company when a crisis strikes.

Chris Gibbons is a successful journalist as well as a sought-after public speaker, conference facilitator and media trainer. Currently, he edits the magazine Acumen for the Gordon Institute of Business Science (GIBS), University of Pretoria, which he also conceptualised and launched in 2012. In addition, he presents a daily market report on AlgoaFM. Between 2002 and 2012, Chris anchored The Mid Day Report, a hard-hitting news, current affairs and business show, simulcast on Gauteng's Talk Radio 702 and the Western Cape's 567 Cape Talk. The show won three successive MTN Radio Awards (2010, 2011, 2012). He has had a distinguished career on both radio and television, anchoring Newstalk on 702 from 1987 until 1997 and News Hour on SABC TV3 between 1997 and 1999. During his career at 702, he conducted a number of historic interviews, including the first between any SA radio station and the still-exiled Thabo Mbeki. He also interviewed Nelson Mandela several times, as well as Margaret Thatcher and US Vice-president, Al Gore. With an MA from Cambridge, Chris also holds an MBA from Henley, one of the UK's leading business schools.

Who should attend?

This introductory course will benefit entry to middle levels professionals who are responsible for corporate communications, reputation and crisis management, media relations, corporate affairs, public relations and stakeholder engagements as well as those want a refresher course.


GIBS campus, 26 Melville Road, Illovo, Sandton, Johannesburg

Fee and cancellation policy:

Fee of R4 700 per person includes masterclass materials, lunch and refreshments for the day.

Payment of R4 700 per person must be received latest 2 weeks prior to start of masterclass to secure seat. Please adhere to cancellation policy outlined below.

Online booking:

To book your seat, please click APPLY NOW (top right corner of this page). If you have queries on how to book online, please send an email to

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