3 Scenario ideas for a Emergency Management Organization Culture risk in a USA context.

Eye of the Innovation Storm: Bridging Generational Divides in Emergency Management


🏢 Emergency Management

⚠️ Organization Culture risk
🌍 {context}


 

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Option 1: 

Eye of the Innovation Storm: Bridging Generational Divides in Emergency Management

Scenario:

In the small, bustling city of Mason’s Creek, the independent Emergency Management organisation known as “The Protectors of the Creek” (PC) faces a unique and rising challenge. The PC, once celebrated for its vibrant diversity and innovation, is now on the brink of collapse due to an insidious organisational culture risk: a growing divide between senior and junior members. The seniors, with years of service and experience under their belts, are entrenched in traditional, bureaucratic ways, resistant to change and technological innovation. The juniors, digital natives, believe in employing new-age tech solutions and modern practices to aid in emergency management. The escalating tension has led to discord, decreased efficiency and most importantly, increased probability of serious cases being mishandled.

The situation worsens when the city foresees the most severe hurricane in its history and the PC is tasked to prepare, respond, and recover from the imminent disaster. The organisation’s culture risk is amplified as the seniors insist on sticking to the tried-and-tested, paper-based strategies, while juniors advocate for digital innovation and data-driven decision-making.

The scenario is set as the eye of the storm approaches Mason’s Creek. The PC now needs to iron out their internal disputes, effectively communicate, and work together to successfully navigate the dangerous hurricane and protect their city. The future of Mason’s Creek and the longevity of the PC hangs in the balance as they are thrown into the eye of the storm – both metaphorically and literally.

Aims and objectives:

1. To highlight the importance of embracing both traditional and modern practices within an organization, thus promoting constructive conversation between different generations of employees.

2. To demonstrate the need for embracing change and innovation in the face of evolving challenges, emphasising how diversity can enhance the problem-solving process within an organisation.

3. To assess participants’ abilities in negotiating, communicating, and implementing a consensus-based action plan in a high-pressure scenario, while navigating an internal organisation culture risk.


 

Option 2: 

“The Storm Within: A Twisted Tale of Collaboration”

**Scenario**

Tensions are rising within the Palisade County Protection Agency (PCPA), a renowned Emergency Management organisation in the USA. The organisation is dealing with a deeply-rooted cultural risk that threatens its core operations – a rising tide of interdepartmental rivalry and territoriality. The root cause of this escalating issue points to an ancient feud between members of the Fire Suppression Unit (FSU) and the Hazmat Response Team (HRT). An unverified legend circulates within the Agency’s walls, a tale of a disputed poker game decades ago that resulted in a long-lasting resentment, still pulsing beneath the surface of the PCPA today. This internal conflict is now taking a toll on the efficacy and cohesiveness of the agency’s emergency response efforts.

The tipping point arrives when the PCPA receives intelligence regarding a potentially catastrophic event – an F5 tornado threatens to barrel through Palisade County. This generation-defining storm, now termed “Titan Twister”, kickstarts a critical tabletop exercise that transcends mere disaster planning. The imminent danger forces the FSU and HRT to operate under the same crisis management command. Will the brewing storm of interdepartmental discontent sabotage their crucial collaborative effort, or will the imminent threat of the Titan Twister force them to overcome their ancient feud and work together for the greater good? This will be the question at the heart of our tabletop exercise, testing human relations as much as disaster preparedness.

**Aims and Objectives**

1. To develop and promote a culture of collaboration and mutual respect amongst the diverse departments within the PCPA, ultimately breaking the cycle of rivalry and territoriality.

2. To design an environment where participants experience the direct impact of organizational culture on the effectiveness of emergency response efforts, highlighting the potential consequences of failing to address these issues.

3. To facilitate a constructive evaluation and feedback process post-exercise, fostering insights into the organisation’s pitfalls and crafting a strategic roadmap for cultural transformation.


 

Option 3: 

“Operation Unity: Bridging the AEMA Divide”

-Scenario

Organisation: The Atlantic Emergency Management Agency (AEMA)

The Atlantic Emergency Management Agency (AEMA) with its respected history of swift responses and effective decision making is a cornerstone of public safety in the US. However, recently, the AEMA has started facing a risk that threatens its very foundation – the growing division between its two operation units, the Metropolitan Response Division (MRD) and the Rural Response Division (RRD).

The MRD, an urban-centric unit, was initially set up to address critical incidents in high-density areas. As the cities expanded, so did the MRD’s capabilities and resources. On the contrary, RRD, tasked with safeguarding rural and remote territories, has always functioned with limited resources, owing to the sparse population it serves. This operational disparity has over decades culminated into a cultural chasm, sparking resentment, mistrust, and unhealthy competition between the two divisions.

The scenario begins with “Operation Spirit United”, a simulated major earthquake striking both urban and rural areas simultaneously. Faced with the necessity of a unified response, the MRD and RRD must work together efficiently to mitigate the damage and save lives. Adding to the intensity, AEMA leaders have invited an external review panel to assess the organisation’s performance. As the divisions grapple with their differences, will they be able to put aside their rivalry and unite for the greater good? Or will their deep-seated biases and lack of cooperation lead to a catastrophic failure in disaster management?

-Aims and Objectives

• To identify and address the cultural rift between the MRD and RRD that is affecting the overall efficiency of AEMA.

• To evaluate the crisis management skills of both divisions and their ability to cooperate under high-pressure scenarios.

• To assess the organisation’s overall ability to manage a complex, multi-dimensional crisis, while undergoing an external performance review.


 

Next steps

 

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Documents included in the complete guide:

Pre-game
Assistance Identifying target audience, players and stakeholder analysis
Getting commitment from stakeholders
Essential resources and logistics checklist
Roles and responsibilities checklist
Custom Potential character personas or roles guide
Risk management when running a game
Making good handouts and props
Playtesting guide
Facilitator notes
Guide to facilitating well
Tips for running the game on the day
Using Theatre of the Mind

In-game
Player introductions
Custom Narrative Running sheet
Custom Inject ideas
Custom Complications

Post-game
Custom Hotwash guide
Evaluation and Data Analysis Guide
Communicating the results checklist
Custom Handouts and resource ideas
Player guide
X-card
Ground rules sheet
Hybrid or remote game tips

 

 

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