Entrepreneurs are excited to get their new business off the ground. They are motivated and enthusiastic – ready to take on the world. The world, however, isn’t always so accommodating. And, it’s not just the business and economic environment that can get in the way. It’s the environment created by Mother Nature as well.
We’ve seen it time and time again. Recent years on the east coast alone have brought many unexpected weather patterns – from Super Storm Sandy to the Derecho (that was a new one), which came on without warning. From blizzard conditions, ice storms and feet of snow, weather has reared its uncooperative head.
Now, another new weather word is flooding the media and heading our way – The Polar Vortex. It’s coming, and it’s going to be cold, cold, cold. Taking steps to ensure your small business is prepared is a great way to protect your business and your entrepreneurial “go get em” attitude.
The cold weather will likely keep customers at home, possibly resulting in a temporary loss of revenue. The wind could create situations of power outage, making it difficult to do business. The cold could cause pipes and water mains to break, causing flood conditions locally or a temporary loss of water. School systems in the Midwest have already closed due to the below freezing temperatures. If schools close down this week, you may have employees who cannot make it to the office, slowing overall productivity. Finally, transit problems are often a side effect of the cold weather, from cars not starting to slowed public transportation. These are all things that can, in fact, impact your business.
You can’t escape the Polar Vortex I’m afraid, unless you happen to have tickets booked the Caribbean, but you can prepare yourself, your staff and your business. Ensure employees know what to do in the situations listed above. Verify that your insurance policy covers you for loss of income and damages associated with these conditions. If there is work that can be done in hard copy, print the necessary materials out ahead of time, and keep hard copies of important documents, client information and employee contacts on hand at home. Once you’ve checked your coverage and made the necessary arrangements, bundle up and hunker down. It may be a wild and very chilly ride.