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Preparing for disasters

Because predicting the future is hard

Disasters happen every day. Natural disasters are growing at an alarming rate. Human caused disasters are even scarier. Unfortunately, predicting the future is hard. That is why we need to spend our time a different way, rather than trying to predict the future and HOPE we are correct, we need to prepare for the future and KNOW we are correct. That is why we are trying to help you learn how to plan ahead for any disaster that might hurt your business or your people.

First: Draw out a plan of action:

Costs of a disaster could range from thousands to millions of dollars and putting off emergency preparation and business continuity planning is a risky game that you will likely lose. A plan of action can help you stay composed in an emergency and reduce the time it takes to get safe and back up and running again.

Second: Think about your infrastructure:

It’s easy to let your mind wander and think of all of the bad things that could happen to your organization should a disaster strike. What can be hard is thinking of what pieces of your infrastructure are key in recovery operations, as well as how to fortify them. For example, you could have a perfectly good plan in place in case of an emergency, but if the emergency causes your communication lines to go down, how do you follow through with your plan? There are key pieces of the infrastructure (like communications) everywhere and you need to be sure they are all covered for all types of disaster.

Third: Train your people:

What good does an elaborate emergency plan do if nobody in your organization knows and understands it well enough to implement it. A good understanding and some practice can go a long way when you are dealing with emergency preparedness. Think of fire escape maps… They are important to have and make a lot of sense. However, if all you have is the fire escape maps and haven’t practiced or trained your people, do you really think they will be stopping at the maps in the event of a fire to check for directions or instructions? It is the same in all other cases as well. Practice makes perfect. Find more about how to best train your people.

Fourth: Work and re-work:

Your first run-through will inevitably have some kinks. That is okay. Every organization has a different structure, different people and processes. This means you will have to adapt your plan until you know it is efficient and will work FOR YOU. Take some time to work out the kinks and put a little practice in. Make sure you have everything set up and that new people in your organization are being trained on it just like any other operation. Once or twice a year you should run a couple little tests on your equipment and processes. It will only take a few minutes but could save you thousands of dollars in the long run.

Fifth: Keep an eye out:

Now that you have a plan in place keep an eye out for disasters that could harm your organization. You can literally save thousands of dollars and more importantly, lives, with only minutes of difference in reaction time. More info about monitoring risks.