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Business Planning Process Planning & Strategy

Being Prepared and Protecting Your Business from a Natural Disaster

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If you think that something like a natural disaster won’t ever happen for your business, then it is time to think again. That kind of attitude can set yourself up for disaster, because although statistically it is unlikely, things can and so still happen, even on a small scale. According to research, it has been found that 40% of businesses don’t reopen after a natural disaster. So would you want those odds against you? Plus, with all that has been going on recently with a global pandemic, it shows that anything can happen, and even if things are going well, it can all change in a matter of days. So what can you do to be prepared? Here are some things to think about.

Insurance

The chances are that as a business owner, you will have insurance. Does the insurance cover things like damage from natural disasters, for example? How about employer liability if staff get injured when at work, due to an earthquake? If you have insurance, or if you are getting some for your business, then you need to check it, and check it again. Read through the fine print to know exactly what you are covered for.

You can do a lot of things yourself to make sure that the damage is reduced, such as getting things like shatterproof window film for the windows at the office. Insurance is still needed, though. A lot of the reasons why businesses close after a disaster is because they can’t afford to repair things. If you’re covered, then that won’t be a possibility.

Business Continuity Plan

If you want your business to be able to survive a damaging event, then having a plan in place, stating what you will do before, during, and after a natural disaster will help. Make the plan, know the plan, and make sure that your employees know the plan too. Practice some drills, such as what to do for a fire evacuation or what to do in case of an earthquake. Assigning some responsibilities to different staff members can make a difference too, so that it isn’t just the leadership team taking charge.

On top of the physical ways to plan and prepare, you should think about the other aspects of the business. If you have a brick and mortar retail store, would you move things online until after the store is safe again? Can employees work from home for other kinds of businesses? Although you might not ever need to use these plans, it is a good idea to have it all in place just in case.

Maintain Vital Records Offsite

If an office or a store goes up in flames or gets completely damaged by a storm or a flood, then what are you going to do about records that are there? They could get lost permanently if they aren’t stored or backed-up anywhere else. The ability to be able to access important information is going to be critical for a business to get up and running again. So think about where information is stored, and consider somewhere off-site, as well as using the cloud for data storage, as long as it can be accessed remotely.

 

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