“In my early 20’s, I was working in a security command center and jumped at every opportunity to manage incidents when they came through the hotline. One day after all stakeholders dropped from the incident call, and it was just me and the BC director left, I gathered up enough nerve to ask her what business continuity was. After a brief explanation, I wanted in!”
This is how Crystal Witt, a crisis manager with Humana got her start in BC and crisis management. “I was fortunate that the BC director took me under her wing for almost two years and mentored me until I was ready to join the team. Once I joined, my passion always steered toward crisis management and eventually I became a crisis manager.”
After 10 years in the industry, Witt’s passion for crisis management has not eased off. “I absolutely love the crisis management space and I see myself spending a lasting career here. I think it will be as exciting as it is to me today as it will be in 30 years. Crisis management has so many different layers to it and is constantly evolving.”
As a crisis manager, Witt brings a different perspective to BC and to what she would like to see change in the industry. As she tells us, “In the BC/DR space, I would like to see more companies moving away from heavy BC and crisis plans that no one has time to look at during an event, and giving teams what they need to thoughtfully respond. This would also help our space and make it less intimidating to others.”
To add an extra dimension to her role as a crisis manager, Witt works remotely on the West Coast, while the rest of her team is on the East Coast. Thanks to using the latest in communication technology and regular phone conversations, she and her team are able to stay connected and in constant communication.
Witt would love to see more young professionals in her chosen career. If she could, Witt would tell them that “The field is ever evolving and is one of the only fields in the company where you get to literally network with each and every line of business in the enterprise, and teach them something that is really important to their success at time of crisis.”