Recently while sitting in my office, I heard a large explosion from about 400m down the road. It was a home explosion where a gas bottle hadn't been turned off properly. I know this is extreme and not something that happens everyday, but it got me thinking. What if my office was next door to that house and was no longer accessible? - as were the neighbouring homes in this case. Do I have a plan for when things go wrong?
Even on our best days the worst things can happen to us. In business we need to be prepared for the unexpected and here are some tips on how you can keep your business functioning - no matter what the crisis.
I know this might seem like the first obvious thing to do, but how often do we genuinely perform a regular backup? Is your backup system easy enough to use so you are not hindered in performing regular backups?
I use Microsoft SyncToy so I have an exact copy of my files on an external hard drive. I do this every day and especially after I complete a large task.
For me, this means I can also take the hard drive off site if I need to take my files with me. Should my computer crash at any time, I will always have a copy of my files from no more than 24 hours previously.
I love the cloud. The concept of information storage offsite being updated as soon as the file is saved is just awesome! DropBox, Box, ASUS Webstorage, SkyDrive - just to name a few. I can access my files from whatever device I am working on. For example, if I am doing some research using my iPad, I can save to one of these cloud based storage areas and pick up the information on my laptop later in the day, or whenever I need it. All of my data is saved to webstorage, so even if my backup fails, my files are in the cloud.
Make yourself mobile
I often say some people have a car boot sale, while I have a car boot office! With my laptop and mobile phone with 3G capabiility I can work from anywhere. I am able to speak to my clients and do tasks for them even while on the road. I am there for my clients when they need me. If perchance I don't have my laptop with me (rarely!) I can access it remotely using LogMeIn from my iPad. Depending on the connection it can take longer than usual, but it works when you need it and can get you out of a pickle.
I feel confident, that whatever disaster could potentially rock my office, I can continue, just as if nothing happened - and that is comforting.
How about you?