Being Prepared

We just received a giant snowfall here in PA. We received almost 32" in one shot. All that said I will take the North East over living in some other locations in the US. Yes, we can get some wicked snow, and yes people can be killed and property destroyed, but we tend not to get other huge natural disasters.

It's really the tornado that scares me the most. You really can't predict them more than a few minutes out and even then you barely know how wicked they are until they are done and gone. Earthquakes tend to be in "zones" and if you live in an earthquake zone you know it and you prepare for the worst. Same seems to go for hurricanes and flooding. Yes they happen outside of specific areas but if you live in a zone you tend to know it and can prepare.

But being prepared when you have a small business is sometimes a difficult task, but technology is making it easier and easier.

Files: accounting, labels, etc... these I keep on both an external hard drive and on a cloud storage (like dropbox). If I need to leave quick I can grab the hard drive off my desk and go, but if I can't leave with it (like a fire) then I have backups I can access from any computer.

I also keep a list of all my major suppliers, what I get from them and how much it last cost when I bought it. Personally I have quite a few suppliers that I get just one thing from, and maybe only once every few years. Having a list makes sure if something goes wrong I could pick up where I left off much quicker than starting from scratch.

But what if something goes wrong with a supplier? I try and keep most things local, but that still doesn't mean they won't have a fire or something else happen to them. For this I keep a list that I update each year. Supply + 3 places to get it that are geographically different. For example the oils I use for my soaps I can get here in PA, but also from IL and NC. I also make sure I work this into the spreadsheet I use for calculating my costs and prices. I wouldn't make much profit if all of a sudden I needed to ship all my supplies in from another state, but I wouldn't be loosing money either. It would be a way to keep going without interruption until my current supplier gets back on their feet.

The world is filled with terrible disasters, some man made and some not. Don't live in fear, but try and be ready so your business can go on and you can survive through whatever comes at you. 

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