Mother nature is pissed! We've had one natural disaster after another and one heart breaking personal disaster story on top of another heart wrenching story for months. The devastation is overwhelming and I honestly can't imagine how I would cope if the recent tornadoes in central Massachusetts had leveled my home. Jack Daniels and chocolate would be my choice for first aid!
The scenes on TV got me thinking about the disasters we face in business and whether or not we're anymore prepared for them than we would be for the wreckage to our homes left from a flood or tornado. I know we all, at least I hope we all have back up plans and back up systems for our computers - if you don't, well, you know what you have to do RIGHT NOW!
But what about the other business disasters that can be just as devastating.
Take some time, real time, to think about and develop action plans for the potential disasters that strike at the heart of your company's productivity. Events like:
Your top executive gets recruited by the competition. Your highest producing sales person bolts to the enemy.
Did you have a non-compete? How quickly can you bar the door to your client list and information? Do you have an agreement about paying outstanding commission, bonuses, stock?
Are you always recruiting for top talent? Do you have ready list of top talent to call? Do you have an effective on-boarding plan?
Your largest client decides to try your competition.
How much of your revenue is driven by your top 5 clients? Are you always prospecting for clients? Do you know how you would manage cash flow if you took a sudden, big revenue hit?
Your product or service is no longer the leading option.
Are you always developing bigger, better, cheaper, faster solutions? Do you regularly sample competitors products? Do you regularly ask your customers what they want in the next generation of your product or service? Do you know where your market is heading?
You physical facility is damaged in small or big ways.
When Old Man Winter cuts your power, where will your staff work to continue to support your customers? Should you have back up generators? Which of your customers will be the most impacted by your inability to service them and what does that mean for their business?
Your significant other gets caught sending naughty pictures over the Internet. Opps, not my job. Call a lawyer!
You get the point. S_ _ _ happens, but as the Boy Scouts say, Be Prepared! Get your team together, develop contingency plans and make sure everyone knows what to do, when to do it and how to keep the company moving forward in spite of a calamity.
I'm not a "half empty kind of person" and these suggestions are not meant to scare you or be overly negative. But years of experience building and consulting with companies have proven that sticking your head in the sand is a bad move in business. So, get a keg of beer, load up on munchies and start planning now. First up on the agenda, how to keep that beer cold not matter what!
Feeling overwhelmed with challenges you don't have time to address?
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