Preparing for Disasters as a Business Owner
September is Disaster Preparedness Month - and what better reminder that we need to be prepared for disasters than Hurricane Dorian. Living in Florida, I can tell you that over the past few days you can’t turn on a TV or radio station and not know there is a hurricane out there getting ready to pounce. Of course, the problem is that no one has been exactly sure where Hurricane Dorian will pounce. Mother Nature is fickle. She’ll do whatever she darn well pleases, and all the forecasters in the world aren’t going to be able to guess correctly 100% of the time. And that’s why you need to be prepared. The news is full of what you need to do– have water, food, and a plan. And to be honest, I think most of us do for our personal lives. We are prepared to hunker down or bug-out, if necessary. Husband – check. Dog – check. Food – check. Water – check. Clothes – check. Insurance, medical, important papers – check. But what about our business? Have we even considered insurance on our business? What about our property and inventory? What happens if the business has to be closed due to a disaster? The time to think about this is NOT when there is a Cat 5 hurricane (insert relevant disaster) knocking on your door! Even if you are not directly impacted, you may be affected if you are expecting deliveries to or from an area that got hit. Let your customers know that deliveries may be impacted by whatever the disaster is. Granted, depending on the disaster, you may or may not be able to provide advanced warning. Tornados and earthquakes tend to pop up rather suddenly. Hurricanes, on the other hand, are an entirely different creature – someone once said it was like being stalked by a turtle – you know it’s there and you have days to stress about it, but you don’t always know exactly where it’s going to hit (back to that fickle Mother Nature…). You may think you’re in the clear and then wake up the next morning and find out you need to evacuate (thank you, Hurricane Irma). So, as a business owner, you need to be prepared – know where your important business papers are and that they are safe, make sure you’re business is covered, and as with all things related to business, be adaptable/flexible! Disasters are scary. No doubt. But if you have a plan, both personally and professionally, you can concentrate on being safe, and survive any storm. Be safe my friends. You are in our thoughts and prayers.