Preparing for a Disaster

Sep 26, 2016 | | 1597 |

Preparing for a Disaster

By Clint Fransen

Preparing for disaster isn’t just about putting together a kit with everything you need ahead of time (though we highly recommend it), it also means making sure your employees are trained and that you have put processes in place in order to react and recover from a catastrophe.

Train Your People

Just like your people are essential to the success of your everyday business, they’re also essential to the survival of your business following a disaster. Prior to a disaster, you should organize and train your employees to fulfill the following roles:

Emergency Responders

Your emergency responders are those who are trained to react in a chaotic situation. These are the people in your dealership who can make decisions quickly and you can trust in stressful situations. Work with them to establish roles and processes and then rehearse, rehearse, rehearse.

Communications Team

Your communications team is responsible for — you guessed it —communication. These are the individuals who will keep contact information on hand for dealership employees, authorities and more. They’ll be responsible for sharing information with your employees and customers during and after a crisis.

Operations Team

Your operations team is responsible for making sure you have processes in place to protect your dealership, respond during a crisis and work towards recovery.

Put Processes in Place

When disaster strikes, you want to rely on predetermined processes to navigate you through the chaos. Before an event happens, put processes in place to mitigate damage; talk about securing your equipment, disposing of hazardous materials and storing and backing up your data. Work with your teams to clarify roles and processes in the midst of disaster and rehearse regularly. For recovery, make sure you have a plan to assess property damages and work towards getting the business back up and running.

A disaster can be traumatic, but it doesn’t have to mean the end for your dealership. When it comes to withstanding disaster, the key is to plan, prepare and practice.

CLINT FRANSEN
Global Security Organization
Clint Fransen works on the Global Security Organization building business resiliency and crisis management programs. He has been a strong proponent of building public-private sector relationships and has advised local, State and Federal government agencies on best practices to build relationships between the two sectors. Clint is a Certified Business Continuity Professional and a graduate of Indiana University Bloomington.

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