The Crisis Simulation Handbook

The Crisis Simulation Handbook explains how to plan, design and deliver world-class crisis simulation exercises.

By Grant Rayner

US $28.95

Just read your book, The Crisis Simulation Handbook. It’s excellent, full of practical advice and by far, the best publication I’ve seen on this topic. Thanks for writing and publishing it.

JS, Group Security

The Crisis Simulation Handbook is designed to equip you with the essential knowledge and skills needed to plan, design, and execute effective crisis simulation exercises.

This book draws on over 30 years of experience of conducting crisis simulation exercises for Olympic Games events and hundreds of hours conducting simulation exercises for corporate clients.

Whether you’re an experienced crisis management professional or a manager looking to strengthen your organisation’s resilience, this book will provide you with practical, actionable guidance to enhance your crisis preparedness.

In the first chapter, we introduce the concept of crisis management and the vital role that simulation exercises play in building a robust crisis management capability. We outline the differences between desktop exercises and simulations, and explore the core principles that underpin successful exercises.

As we dive into exercise planning, we cover crucial aspects such as exercise duration, objectives, scheduling, and the selection of role players. We discuss how to create an engaging and realistic exercise environment that challenges participants and tests their crisis management skills.

In the chapter on exercise design, we provide step-by-step guidance on crafting compelling scenarios, developing storyboards, and writing exercise scripts. We share techniques for making exercises challenging, engaging, and tailored to the specific needs of your organisation. We also touch on some of the unique challenges you’ll face if you’re required to design exercises in foreign languages.

The chapter on exercise delivery delves into the critical factors that ensure a successful crisis simulation exercise. We discuss the various exercise roles, how to manage role player interactions, and maintain sequence and flow. Additionally, we cover interesting aspects, such as the use of sound effects to enhance realism.

Finally, the post-exercise activities chapter guides you through the essential processes that follow a simulation, such as self-assessments, debriefings, and evaluations. We also emphasise the importance of leader coaching, exercise reporting, and measuring team performance to ensure continuous improvement and development.

Overall, the Crisis Simulation Handbook is an indispensable resource for professionals seeking to improve their organisation’s crisis management capabilities. By implementing the strategies and techniques found within these pages, you will be well on your way to conducting successful crisis simulation exercises that drive growth, resilience, and preparedness.


Table of contents


  1. Introduction
  2. Exercise Planning
  3. Exercise Design
  4. Exercise Delivery
  5. Post Exercise Activities
  6. Conclusion

First published 31 January 2021

Updated to Version 3 on 28 February 2022

ISBN: 978-981-18-0093-1

433 pages

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