Protecting Businesses from Environmental Vulnerabilities

Protecting Businesses from Environmental Vulnerabilities

Countries all over the world had to battle a global pandemic throughout 2020. The arrival of COVID-19 was unprecedented, leaving many to adapt on-the-fly. Aside from that, the previous year was also riddled with its fair share of intense natural disasters. A call for climate justice in line with the global climate crisis was even started. It was a defining moment in recent history.

All of these events are also particular vulnerabilities that companies often have to face. The economic and operational damages that these disasters could cause should also be taken into consideration. Given the steady increase in the frequency and intensity of natural calamities, businesses should find it best to equip themselves with the appropriate responses to these threats.

Preparing for the Worst

Disaster preparedness for many businesses has become even more crucial now, given the new realities that the climate crisis and global pandemic have brought.

Being hit by any natural disaster is catastrophic to a business regardless of insurance. It could take weeks, months, or even years to fully recover from the effects that these could bring. In the worst case, it could essentially end a company for good.

Preparing for disasters has generally been overlooked in the past. Prevention is much better than protection in the case of businesses. It is also a lot easier to plan than many business owners and investors would care to admit. If it isn’t already a part of the business plan, consider the necessary steps to ensure the company’s safety.

Identify the Risks

The location of a particular business plays a significant role in its disaster preparedness. Large-scale disasters, hurricanes, earthquakes, and wildfires are some of the most common threats to be wary of. Identifying the type of calamity that most frequently occurs near the area of a business is the first step.

Investing in greater access to real-time environmental data is one of the best ways to get ahead of the curve. Partnering with local agencies with access to these particular types of data might seem drastic, but it will ultimately save countless businesses and, more importantly, lives.

Equip the Necessary Tools

Outfitting an office space with the small but necessary utilities to mitigate natural disasters might seem trivial. Intentionally designing and mapping a business to combat these calamities can go a long way. To put this into perspective, some of the largest wildfires ever recorded ravaged the west coast in 2020.

If a particular business is close to an area prone to wildfires, having fire extinguishers and water sprinklers at the ready is already given. However, more efficient and innovative ways to add to these preexisting precautions could significantly increase safety. Something as small as installing fire-rated downlights, for instance, can help slow down the spread of fire, giving more time to put it out or allow people to evacuate safely.

Plan Development and Implementation

Establishing a plan of operations in times of an emergency is also a great way to make sure employees know what they are supposed to do. As opposed to entering a state of panic, ensuring that specific protocols have to be followed can help them make calm, rational decisions. Keep employees regularly informed of whom to follow, where to evacuate, and how to communicate in times of disasters.

It is also always a good idea to involve them in developing disaster preparedness operations to adjust accordingly to what works. Conduct various safety drills seasonally to allow the employees to review the necessary procedures for these plans.

a palm tree being blown by the wind

Thrive in Recovery

Regardless of how minimal or extensive incurred damages might be, recovering from a natural disaster is just as important as surviving one. Businesses flourish in several ways, even after suffering devastating losses, as long as business owners look to the right avenues.

Data Storage

Business paperwork can easily be lost in times of calamity. Creating copies of important documents and storing them at off-site locations is a necessary precaution, albeit extensive. Keeping them electronically through cloud-based systems is also a viable option as long as a business is covered by cybersecurity.

Insurance Claims

Investing in business insurance policies is a great way to make sure that losses are entirely replaced. If a business owner’s concerns are significant in times of calamity, regularly meeting with an insurance advisor can help put those concerns at ease. Regularly review the company’s coverage to see whether the limits can guarantee recovery.

Ultimately, preparing a business for natural disasters should become a top priority for any entrepreneur. A company can never be too safe from any existing vulnerabilities it might encounter, environmentally or otherwise.