When you think of protection for your business, you most likely think of insurance, security alarms or guards, and incorporation, but how would you protect your business in the event of a natural disaster?
Imagine what an earthquake, hurricane, or wildfire could do to your place of business. It might take weeks or months before you can get your business running again. You can’t plan for everything, but there are some steps you can take right now that will ease your mind when a disaster strikes.
- Back Up Your Data
Regardless of the type of business you have, everyone has data that they need or rely on. Backing up your data and storing paperwork at an offsite facility can help restore your business after a disaster. You should back up data such as insurance claims and policies, payroll, tax forms, and accounts receivable/payable. Consider purchasing some type of cloud storage so you can access your files from anywhere.
- Create an Emergency Plan
Do this today, not next week or next month. Do it while you are thinking about it. If a disaster should strike, creating a plan that handles the small things (which can become big things) will help keep some order. Think about who would be in charge if you or another executive were unreachable? Who and how would your employees make contact if there is no email service? Does everyone know where fire extinguishers and first aid kits are located? Who has keys to the building and is there someone with a spare set of keys? If you take care of small things, the big things tend to take care of themselves.
- Try to Maintain Communications
This might be the most difficult task, but it is also one of the most important. Part of your plan above should include how employees will communicate with each other, how you will communicate with them, and who would be responsible for communicating with clients or customers if you were unable to? Consider that some options, such as cell phones or email, may not be available. Plan to have multiple options.
- Review and Upgrade Your Insurance Policies
No one wants to pay for insurance they will never use but everyone is happy to have insurance when a disaster occurs. Review your insurance plan with your agent. Ask about certain types of disasters and whether they are covered. Ask about deductibles and make a plan for paying those deductibles if a disaster should strike.
- Create a Plan for Your Employees
Human life should always be a priority, however, some employees are so loyal, they will show up for work unless instructed to do otherwise. Create a plan where employees know exactly when they should NOT show up for work. Consider naming one or two employees that other employees can contact to answer questions in case you are unavailable. Make out evacuation plans, post them in every department, and practice monthly evacuation drills.
Remember that warehouses, inventory, and business machines can easily be replaced and are covered by insurance. Your safety, and the safety of your family and employees, should be your top priority.
A good source of information by the federal agency is Ready.gov
Book a FREE risk assessment with Greenteams advisors to start preparing for a Pandemic or Natural Disaster HERE