A new crisis type: management-induced crisis (MIC) and the Qantas lockout

Damian John Gleeson


Organisational crises include financial scandals, hostile take-overs, and industrial confrontations. Existing clusters or crises typologies do not adequately explain a situation where management actions are an intentional catalyst for crisis intensity. This paper expands upon Coombs’s (2004) three cluster crisis typology and proposes a new category of intentional crisis: management-induced crisis (MIC). Such a crisis typically threatens the organisation’s immediate viability in a strategy, but aims to bring about longer term benefits. An example is Australia’s largest airline, Qantas, which intentionally locked out its employees and grounded its fleet in late October 2011. Through this MIC Qantas successfully coaxed the Australian Government to intervene, paving the way for resolution of an otherwise chronic unstable situation.


Airline industry; Government; Management-induced crisis; Qantas

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The University of Newcastle
ISSN - 1839-8227