Help: Battle Buddy Network and Declaring a Crisis

(Skip ahead to Declaring a Crisis)

Battle Buddy Network

The Battle Buddy Network was designed to help arts organizations make connections with one another in times of calm, so when trouble strikes you can immediately turn to one another for help. The relationship between Battle Buddy organizations should be one of trust, adequate communication, and mutual respect. Participation in the Battle Buddy Network is optional, but strongly encouraged. The Network allows your organization the ability to declare a crisis in ArtsReady, and solicit assistance from the community during an unexpected event.

Joining the Battle Buddy Network

When you first visit the Battle Buddy Network you will see 2 tabs: “Find Buddy” and “Our Profile”. These tabs appear to any organization that has not yet joined the Battle Buddy Network. To the right of the screen you will find a red and grey hyperlink to “Join the Battle Buddy Network,” this is one way to take full advantage of this feature.

To join the Battle Buddy Network, click on the grey “Settings” button located on the top right side of your screen. Select, the “Organization” tab. (You can also navigate to this page by selecting the red and grey “Join the Battle Buddy Network” hyperlink located on the top right of your Dashboard or the Battle Buddy Network page.) At the bottom of the resulting page, you will find a check box labeled “Join the Battle Buddy Network.” Select the box and click the red, “Save settings” button to apply the changes.

Once you have joined the BBN three tabs will now be visible: “Lend a hand”, “Find a Buddy” and “Our Profile.”. Located on the right side you will see a grey, “Crisis mode” feature with a red “Activate” button” located inside it. Unless you are in crisis, the field says OFF. (Go here to learn about Crisis Mode)

Joining the Battle Buddies Network is only a partial step toward truly engaging with the greater ArtsReady community. The rest of the journey requires research and outreach. You have to investigate and find Buddies that would be able to help your organization with its more vulnerable areas, and establish the appropriate relationship with those institutions. Creating such relationships is the most advanced part of ArtsReady, but can be the most rewarding and maybe even most vital.

Lend a Hand

The Lend a Hand page, the first tab under the Battle Buddy Network once you have joined, is where your organization can go to reach out to other members of the community that are experiencing a crisis. There are three sections on this page.

Organizations in Need
The Organizations in Need section notes any organization that has declared a crisis in ArtsReady if the crisis is public, or from one of your Battle Buddies. The section defaults to say “All ArtsReady members are doing great!” if no one has declared a crisis publically or from within in your Network.

However, if an organization is in crisis, you see:

• The organization’s name
• Physical address
• Primary contact email and phone number
• Privacy setting
• A list of needs

The list of needs states what the organization requires to confront the issue. Items or requests that are bold have not been provided. Those that are grayed out are no longer required. The hyperlinked name of the organization brings you to its profile. Here, if the troubled organization is not your Battle Buddy, you can request to become one by selecting the red “Add as Battle Buddy” button.

Crisis Log
In the center of Lend a Hand is the Crisis Log section. This section is only visible if there is actively an Organization in Need. There will be a bold header with the organization’s name above a log, so you differentiate between conversations if there are multiple troubled institutions.
Through the Log you can see the latest description of the crisis as stated by the troubled organization. Then, using the provided field, you can write in an offer of aid or guidance. Select “Submit” to post your message. If you are a Battle Buddy, the organization will also receive an automatic email with the information or statement you made.

The feature to the right of the Lend a Hand page titled Messages is designed for general inquiries and dialogues on ArtsReady. Your organization can use this feature if you have a question for the greater community. All comments here are viewable by very member of the Battle Buddy Network.

Building “Our Profile”

This is your opportunity to present your organization to other members of the ArtsReady community. You can share specific resources with the community or share your general areas of expertise. This feature is designed to help jump-start your decision making process of selecting a Battle Buddy by providing a snap shot of each organization that is part of the network.

Find a Buddy: Building a Network

Finding a Buddy
ArtsReady recommends that organizations seek multiple Battle Buddies with a minimum of two—one within your region and one out of your region in case a large scale disaster hits. We also recommend becoming Battle Buddies with ArtsReady, so we can help you with any technical issues while you are in crisis.

In looking for a Buddy you should consider what may be useful to you and your Critical Functions if your organization is compromised. Remember that a
Buddy may not be directly within your arts discipline! Some things that a Buddy may help with include…
• Sending extra hands if you need help with a clean up, set up, or move
• Communicating on your behalf if you are incapacitated organizationally
• Providing back up office, rehearsal, or production space
• Assisting with technical expertise (like loaning an accountant, lighting technician, maintenance person, etc)

Look at the potential Buddy’s profile in ArtsReady and/or research their organization externally by visiting websites or reading about them to gather more information. Once you have found an organization that would be appropriate to approach you can hit the “Add a Buddy” button. The system will send the organization an automated note stating your request.

Recommended Buddies
Add ArtsReady as your Battle Buddy! It is an acceptable practice to have a Battle Buddy in region and out and ArtsReady would be an ideal Battle Buddy for most organizations.

A Buddy Invitation to you!
You have received an email from an organization requesting Battle Buddy status. We highly recommend that you research the requestor before you commit. The research should not be unlike that you perform to find Buddies. Remember, Battle Buddy relationships must be mutual. By becoming a Buddy you agree to help and be helped by one another. Do not feel obligated to accept a request if the organization would not be a suitable match.

However, if you research the Buddy and find the relationship appropriate, proceed accordingly and become Battle Buddies!

Now that you’re Buddies

It’s great to have friends! Now you want to communicate with your Buddy so you can define the parameters of the relationship and what role you are interested in playing for each other in times of need. The agreement can be to reciprocate on specific needs/resources, or can be an overall organizational agreement, but each Buddy should clearly understand their commitment and formally agree.

Once you’ve established a Battle Buddy relationship you can:
• Notify your Buddies individually or as a group when you declare a crisis if you wish to keep your issue private
• Share internal documents with your Buddies if something specific is needed to help you out

Contracting with a Buddy
ArtsReady does not facilitate contracts between Battle Buddies, but you may find an agreement in writing useful for clarifying expectations. We encourage establishing the relationship in the clearest and most thoughtful manner possible. In order to spell out the nature of your relationship please refer to our Library and the sample Mutual Aid Agreements Mutual Aid Agreements courtesy of FEMA.

NOTE: Battle Buddy relationships are and always will be based on good faith only. ArtsReady reserves the right to suspend or discontinue accounts of users who would abuse the Network relationships for payment or profit. Please review our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Declaring a Crisis and the Crisis Console

*Please note that you cannot access this function unless you have joined the Battle Buddy Network.

Though ArtsReady focuses on planning for crises, we hope you will never have to use this feature. However, the unexpected does happen! A crisis is any unforeseen event that is causing a temporary disruption to one, some, or all of your critical functions. Examples of a crisis include but are not limited to: sudden loss of key staff, theft, natural disaster, loss of access to your facility, or a technological crash.

If you have to declare a crisis and want to seek external assistance, you can hit the red and grey Crisis Mode button on your Dashboard and on the Battle Buddy Network. Before activated, Crisis Mode the button will say “OFF”. Once you have declared a crisis the button will say “ON.”

When you hit the button to activate a crisis you will go to a new window, “Declare a Crisis.” Here:
1. Write a brief explanation of your problem in the “Description” window. Use this to tell the community what is going on. (Example: A water main busted and flooded our prop storage.)
2. Next, consider who you want to notify about your crisis. There are three options:

• *Public*— Your crisis will be visible to the entire ArtsReady Premium Member community, both on their Dashboards and through Lend a Hand in the Battle Buddy Network. Organizations outside of your network can offer to become your Battle Buddy* and help you. Your pre-established Battle Buddies will receive an email notification as well. Choose this option if you have not created Battle Buddies yet or if your crisis is large-scale and does not require discretion
All Battle Buddies — Your crisis will only be visible to your established Battle Buddies, not the general ArtsReady Premium Member public. Battle Buddies will receive an email notification, see it on their Dashboards, and will be able to respond to you and offer aid through Lend a Hand in the Battle Buddy Network.

Private/ Specific Battle Buddies — With this option you can select which of your Battle Buddies you notify of the crisis by checking the box beside their name. Only those selected will receive an email notification and see the crisis on their Dashboard or Lend a Hand page. This is designed for more sensitive issues.

Email communications that go out to your Battle Buddies will include your crisis description, and the primary contact information for your organization. You can view or edit your primary contact information under “Settings.”

Once you have chosen your crisis level and described your issue, you hit the red “Declare Crisis” button and the ArtsReady system is put into motion. To cancel out of the page and not declare a crisis, select the “Cancel”.

*_Becoming Battle Buddies should involve research into the requesting organization since it requires a commitment. If possible we recommend having a proxy vet Battle Buddy requests for you while you are dealing with your Crisis. The proxy can be another pre-established Battle Buddy, your subsidizing ArtsReady Partner, or a service organization who also works in ArtsReady._

Crisis Console

After you declare a crisis and as long as your organization remains in crisis you will have access to a Crisis Console. The Console is visible immediately upon going into crisis mode, can be accessed through your Battle Buddy Network (exclusively), and will appear first in lieu of your Dashboard when you log in. On the Console you can:

Give updates on the Crisis Log — Each time you write an update on your crisis log, a message will go out to the Buddies you have involved in your issue. They in turn can offer help to you and respond to your crisis through their Lend a Hand page in the Battle Buddy Network.

List resources you need to resolve your issue under Your Needs — As Buddies provide requested resources for you can log who gave you what and whether or not the full need was met by hitting “Edit.” You can also edit the need’s description.

Change your crisis visibility by hitting the “Edit” link beside it — If you are in a Private Crisis, you can invite in Buddies that were previously excluded or make your crisis Public by choosing this link. Additional Buddies will receive a notification email, and when they log into the system they will see your whole Crisis log on their Lend a Hand page.

Concluding the Crisis
After the problem has been resolved you can announce your recovery by sending a concluding message to the field through the message log. Then you can hit the Crisis Mode button on the top right of your screen ending the crisis. Everyone involved will receive a notice on your behalf from the ArtsReady system saying that the issue was resolved.

A backlog of your resolved crises can be found under your Settings in a tab called “Previous Crises” indefinitely for your review or reference. This tab only appears if you’ve experienced a crisis and used ArtsReady to help during it.

Responding to a Crisis

A Battle Buddy in Trouble!
If a Battle Buddy declares a Crisis in ArtsReady you will receive an automatic email from the system stating their issue as they described it on their Crisis Console. From there you can log in to ArtsReady, go to the Lend a Hand page, and offer your available resources and assistance. When you communicate with the distressed organization through ArtsReady, their full ArtsReady team will see what you’re offering. Alternatively, you can contact the distressed organization directly because the same initial notification email will list the organization’s primary contact person.

As the situation progresses, you will receive follow-up email alerts each time the Buddy updates the Console. You will also receive an email notification when the Crisis is resolved and has been closed out.

This excludes Private Crisis declarations that didn’t include you. However, your Buddy may elect to alert you of their Private Crisis after it has already been underway. You will receive a notice then and be able to see the backlog of the Crisis Console.

A Crisis from a Non-Buddy
When another organization declares a public crisis, you will see the issue on the Lend a Hand page and your Dashboard, even if you aren’t Battle Buddies. You can read about the organization’s crisis and offer help if appropriate. First suggest becoming Battle Buddies and, if they accept, you’ll be able to offer resources and respond through their Crisis Console.

Help for the To-Dos
Help for the Assessment
Help for the Critical Stuff and Library
Help for the Dashboard and Settings

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