Are you prepared for an emergency?

As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, my youngest son has made four trips to the ER vs. my other children making a combined number of….zero. Three of the visits involved gashes to the head requiring stitches. One resulted from a game that involved jumping (also know as tripping) over a sibling’s outstretched leg. Another was a tragic collision with a bedpost in a darkened room. The third a freak toilet accident.

And the fourth was announced to me with the words every mother loves to hear: “Mama, I think I broke my neck.”

No matter how careful you are, you cannot avoid all emergencies. The prudent business practicioner (and parent) is prepared to act when an emergency strikes. Test your preparedness for a business interruption:

  • Do you have a list of all your employees in an off-site location and a plan to contact them?
  • Do you have a list of your key vendors? Will you be able to get them paid?
  • Do you  have a plan to contact your customers? What will you say?
  • Is all your data backed up? Are you sure? When is the last time you checked your back-up? Is there a copy off-site?
  • If you had to set up your business (even temporarily) at a second location, could you do it? How long would it take?

Some may think that disaster planning is reserved for large businesses, but not so. If anything, small businesses are more vulnerable because a major interruption could be extremely dangerous – even deadly – to the business’ ability to survive. Think of a disater plan as you would insurance, nice to have even though you hope you never have to use it. And be sure to keep a copy of the plan off-site.

How did you deal with a past emergency? Send your stories to – if I use them, I’ll feature your business.