You may have to worry about tornados in the Midwest. If you live in Louisiana, then floods are always on your mind. Earthquakes are no strangers to Californians. Florida sees its fair share of hurricanes. No matter where you run your business from, there's a chance disaster could strike.
If a disaster does occur and you're face-to-face with a catastrophic event, you need to be prepared. You need to have a plan in place. You need to be able to get your business back up and going as quickly as possible.
Always Be Prepared
The easiest way to assess how fast your business could react is to pay attention to your exposures. When doing so, ask yourself these questions:
1. What needs to happen? After a catastrophic event, there will be certain parts of your business that need to be up and running as soon as possible. Other areas of your business aren't as important. Decide what must happen immediately after a disaster and come up with a plan to get essential activities going again quickly.
2. Can you continue to provide value? If a catastrophe were to strike tomorrow, would your company be able to continue to provide value and service to your customers? If not, you need to look into how you operate and find ways to continue to be there for your customers no matter what.
3. Whose help would you need to get back on your feet? Many times, companies need help from insurance agencies, contractors, and more to get them back to work. Think about which individuals you would need help from to restart operations.
4. How can you help your customers? Even if you could not provide the full scope of services and value to your clients right away, you need to think of ways you could continue offering some of your services. A little effort goes a long way, especially when dealing with a disaster and your loyal customers.
5. Do you know your community? You should be aware of all of your local emergency resources and be able to communicate with them immediately if a catastrophe were to occur. Don't forget about your local connections!
6. Do you have other protections in place? Have you fully insured your company in every possible way? Did you pay extra for some preventative measures when building your organization? Focus on finding and cultivating ways to protect your business if something terrible were to happen.
7. Did you protect your vital documents? Did you guard your legal documents—files, tax returns, and such—properly? This is absolutely vital before a disaster strikes. You need to back up everything.
8. Would you still have access to your vital records? Did you backup everything? You want to make sure all of your documents are readily available as you try to recover your business after a storm.
9. Did you do it all? After going through these tips, take a second to step back and consider if you did everything you could. Often, business owners will take numerous preventative measures, but forget to cover some of the basics. With a little introspection, you should be able to avoid any such fate.
You cannot predict when that storm will hit, but you can always be prepared for it. With a little foresight, you'll have your company back up and churning in dollars before you know it. Use these tips and questions to ensure you're always ready.
Concerned about how your business or home would hold up against a storm? Contact Skyline Risk Management, Inc. (718) 267-6600 to voice your concerns.