What’s With the Wacky Weather?

Of latClydes Corner Whats With the Wacky Weather Feb 22 2013e, world weather events and current events have taken on a “Ripley’s Believe it or Not” quality.  And for us, planners, predictors, and pessimists by trade – you know, the masters of disaster, the gloom and doom team, the hand wringing worriers, the not-a-profit-center cost drain, the Chicken Little’s – when surprising things go wrong for companies and communities, “selling” contingency solutions becomes a little easier, right?

So, rewind a week and try telling the folks in Russia that a meteorite will come smashing and crashing through the atmosphere, shattering thousands of windows and injuring scores of people. They’d probably respond with a non-believing torrent of words indicating that your mind was somewhere other than in your skull.  But from now on, those who are fixing the windows and nursing injuries will forever have their eyes skyward, looking for something other than sunsets and pretty cloud formations.

What if you’d told the professional golfers in the desert of Arizona that blizzard-like conditions would cancel the day (or days) of golf because snow suddenly blanketed the fairways and greens.  They’d have thought you were crazy too.  But that’s exactly what happened during Wednesday’s first round of the World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship. Golfer Jason Day told USA Today: “I’ve never actually played golf to the point where we’ve actually stopped for snow, which is kind of crazy. But that’s just how it is. Mother Nature can just do whatever she wants.” Read more about that here, and be prepared to hear more about this particular storm, which is marching eastward with determination and fierceness.

Have we not seen some of our most prominent and public companies hacked by unknown sources? Did we not see one of the world’s most prominent cruise lines experience a power problem at sea rendering it disabled and disgusting? Did we not also just experience a blizzard of mammoth proportions in the Northeast, as well as super storms, and hurricanes? And hasn’t the world been experiencing more than its fair share of flooding and severe weather?

As masters of planning for the unpredictable, we are now in a somewhat enviable position of not having to “sell” our need for business continuity strategies and solutions. That’s why you need to be the best cheerleader that you can be for your resiliency programs. Be the voice of reason. Wear your doctor doom hat proudly, but be practical and realistic. Focus on the recovery solutions you’ll need if your computer systems or workforce are  unavailable. Prepare for suppliers and vendors experiencing outages of their own, the facility where you work being inaccessible, or your tools and equipment being impacted.  If you ready yourself by concentrating on the outcome of the many, many combinations and permutations of events that may befall you and not necessarily the risk/threat/disaster itself, my guess is that you will be prepared if the meteor flies through your window.

Have a great day, a great weekend, keep your eyes skyward, and enjoy the weekend ahead!

Please share an unusual outage type that may have impacted you, your company, or your community.  You can find me at cberger@driif.org .  Thanks.

Have a great week,
Clyde Berger

Vice President and Director of Volunteerism
DRI International Foundation