Residents on the East Coast of the U.S. continue to recover from Hurricane Sandy and small businesses have been especially hard hit. Natural disasters can put you and your employees’ safety at risk and jeopardize your business’ assets causing it to shut down completely.
Fortunately, by taking the precautions listed below, you and your small business can be better prepared in case disaster strikes. The following is how to prepare your business for big storms and natural disasters.
Prepare for the worst
Small businesses can be affected in many ways by weather emergencies like a hurricane. How you weather a widespread, unexpected event depends on how well you have prepared for the worst.
Your business doesn’t need to be located anywhere near a natural disaster to feel its effects. If your small business depends on data centers, like the ones damaged by flooding as a result of Hurricane Sandy, it’s important to be sure that backups are available.
Disasters that threaten your business can come in all shapes and sizes, from a gigantic hurricane to a computer outage or data loss affecting only your hosting or data storage company. Just like homeowners, small business owners must prepare for the worst.
Don’t confuse urgency with emergency. If you don’t know the difference between these two ideas, you might face a danger more insidious than any mother nature can throw your way.
Be aware of the dangers of making every situation an emergency and how this behavior can slowly drain any business of its strength. When you declare a state of emergency for your business, make sure the threat is real.
Disaster plan update
Your business should also have an updated plan of action in case of an emergency. This includes having a designated employee evacuation plan as well as good two-way communication during and after a disaster.
Set up a telephone calling tree or call-in voice recording to stay in touch with employees during and after the disaster.
The best solution for keeping your data safe is by storing it in the cloud. Cloud computing has come a long way, and will insure your data is safe from any malicious weather.
Another good idea is to have multiple back-ups. If there’s an off chance one data location is damaged, you’ll have another copy elsewhere that can be restored. At the very least, keep all sensitive data and important records in a safe storage container.
Many businesses realize that they should have a readily available emergency kit, but often overlook the survival basics: fresh water, food, clean air and warmth. As a business owner, you should not only prepare an emergency kit for the office, but also encourage each employee to create their own kit customized to meet their individual needs.
Disasters can strike at any time, and it’s important for your business to be prepared. Improve your company’s chance of survival and help ease the recovery process by applying these tips on how to prep your business for big storms and natural disasters.