Crisis Management

Crisis Management is a non-nationals (or any other league managed) event that, as far as we know, only exists at two tournaments in the United States.

In this event students act as a press secretary, defending the actions of a person or entity that could be construed as having done something wrong. This event is considered limited prep, but gives students all scenarios at the beginning of the day, so students can prepare as little or as much as they wish prior to walking into round.


The timing

In Crisis Management the students are presenting in two parts: First they are spending 3 minutes presenting the scenario, attempting to give information without lying or placing blame on the entity that is being represented. Once the initial ‘briefing’ is over, there is an additional 4 minutes of questioning that occurs by an interviewer that is not familiar with the scenario given. This interviewer acts like a press core, trying to get information and nail down details.

So: Total up to 7 minutes with 3 minutes of a prepared statement and 4 minutes of question answering.


In crisis management scenarios are generally taken from popular events that have happened in the United States, so students might already be familiar with some of them. The trick here is that the names are changed, and students need to make sure they aren’t accidentally using the names of the official company, or pulling info from past knowledge. Spin is encouraged in this event, but the judge has a copy of the scenario, and lying is penalized.


Here are some typical crisis scenarios. Feel free to print them out, mark them up, highlight, and prep a statement on them. See if you can get your teammates, coaches, and even family to question you, getting you in the habit of knowing how to answer the questions you might see in round. Remember: you’re allowed to be evasive, and implement some spin, but no lying.

Crisis Scenario - Ice Cream Crisis Scenario - Bookface

Crisis Scenario - Private School Finances

Plus, it’s always good to know what your judge sees. Here’s a copy of the Crisis Scenario ballots.