One can only imagine how business owners feel during Hurricane Katrina. They’ve worked years to build their businesses from the ground. When they are finally making enough revenue to leave their day jobs, here’s a hurricane that flattened everything—offices, stores, homes, farms, and many more. Was there any way for these businesses to have prepared for something like Katrina?
While it is hard to predict when a hurricane and tornado will arrive or how much impact it would have on a business, you can still protect your business by taking preventive measures. Knowing your area and the likelihood of natural disasters happening will equip your business. This way, when disaster does strike, it will not be as adversely impactful to your business as it would be if you are not prepared.
Create a Disaster Plan
Each business should have a disaster plan that includes, among others, how to evacuate the building in times of natural disaster. You have to talk with experts and train your staff well on how they can handle the evacuation of employees during a disaster. There are so many factors to a disaster plan that it even includes how to recover after a typhoon, tornado, or hurricane strikes the office or store.
Have the Emergency Numbers Ready
Who should you call in times of disasters? The fire department, police, and hospital are going to be the numbers that your employees need. During a minor catastrophe such as floodwater entering your building, they should also be trained well enough to call a commercial water damage company. The water damage experts will guide your employees on how best to react to floodwater entering the building or when there’s a leak in the pipes. For example, they would have to turn off where the source of the water is coming from.
Buy Insurance Policy
If your area is prone to natural disasters, insure your business. Most of these policies include provisions for natural disasters such as floods, hurricanes, and tornadoes. Insurance companies will charge about $800, but that will cover the cost of having to reopen after a disaster strikes your business.
Studies showed that only two out of five businesses could open after a disaster. What happens to the three others? They no longer have the capital to reopen their doors. That’s why insurance policies matter. The insurance company will cover the expenses of recovering data, repairing furniture and equipment, and renovating the office or store.
Back-Up Important Data
No matter what kind of business you run, one thing is important: have your data backed up regularly. This way, you won’t have to fear losing all documents and files on your loans, personnel, expenses, and revenues. The beauty of living in the age of technology is you can pull information from wherever you may be. That’s because of the cloud. Organize your data and create backups of electronic files—invoices, order forms, receipts, and tax returns. Scan and upload all important documents.
Ensure Infrastructure Precautions Are Followed
Take time to inspect if the business location meets the specific building codes. Ensure the building has the requirements for fire safety and hazard and other calamities that may befall the business. If you are a tenant, ask the landlord to show you the pertinent licenses and permits the state government requires.
Also, make an effort by yourself to protect your office or store from calamities. For example, during a particularly bad typhoon, use protective material such as plywood to seal the windows. For the doorways, you can secure those with sandbags. You can also relocate important office equipment and furniture if you think the impact will be particularly bad.
Save for Emergencies
There’s nothing like a natural disaster to make you bleed money. If you want to make sure your business will stand up on its own after a disaster, you need to save for these kinds of emergencies. Sure, the insurance company will help your business get back on its feet, but you will need to shell out money, too, for the things that insurance won’t cover. If you want it up and running, you should be ready to invest in it once more.
Everyone saw how hurricanes, tsunamis, and typhoons upend lives and livelihoods. And who should you blame? Mother Earth for being what’s natural to her? You need to prepare for the difficult times. If there’s one thing everyone should have learned from the pandemic, it is that being prepared for uncertainties can impact your personal or professional life.