My boys attended elementary at a private Christian school. It's owned and managed by our church. Like most businesses, it wasn't paperless, and not even close to being able to work remotely. Yes, a church and a school can operate it's business administration remotely. It absolutely can. But why would it need to?
The one thing all businesses have in common is operations. Every business operates in some fashion. The key is being able to operate under any circumstance. Just ask my church how difficult it was when their admin building burnt to the ground. Cash, files (years of files!), computers, all burnt.
They weren't prepared for a disaster. Are you? I know I am.
Not only did the building go up in flames, so did almost every paper trail the 20 year-old organization had. We think it won't happen to us. We say it's a slim chance. We disregard anything that seems outlandish.
Like lightning striking a church...
Or like someone driving their car through your home or office. Never gonna happen to me, right?
Am I prepared for that? Can I handle a home or business interruption like that? There's business interruption insurance, and temporary living assistance from my home insurance policy, but the coverage doesn't take away the issue. It's helps break the fall. But we still fall.
We have to retain some of the risk. Meaning we must prepare for that type of situation. Maybe we can't completely defect the repercussions, but we can roll with the punch and keep on keeping on.
Our church couldn't. They've recovered, but it wasn't easy, even with a big insurance claim check. Even with a temporary admin office free of charge (courtesy of their business insurance policy).
I don't have alot of contents in my office. We're an insurance agency... what do we need besides some desks, a couple laptops, and a good scanner?
You'd be surprised. Let a car run through your office and you'll know exactly what you've lost.
Yes, that's The Gann Agency, and that's a GMC Jimmy parked in the lobby, and partially inside one of the agents' office.
Don't ask me how it happened. I wasn't driving and have no idea. Gas pedal instead of break, maybe? No clue.
What I do know is our office is inoperable. Office, not operations. We've built the business to operate from any location as long as we have cell service.
We've trained our customers to call, email, or text. Notice the door:
By Appointment Only
That's not necessarily to keep customers away, it's there to inform. Once you show a customer the convenience of never stepping foot in an office, they'll never step foot in your office. They love it.
With the front of our office wide open (it's now boarded up) one might think "how will we notify customers not to come by" - we've been doing that for years. Not a problem.
The electricity is off due to exposed wiring. How will the phones and internet work? Our phones are internet based (VOIP) and work regardless of electricity. They may not ring at the office, but they'll ring our cell phones.
We all have a data plan, and our phones work as mobile hotspot (wifi). Sure, Starbucks, Panera Bread, Chick Fil A, and many others have free internet, but it's not secure and super slow. So we have our own.
We can even print. Rarely do we need to, but we can if needed.
Our phones take pics in PDF and upload to a web-based storage. Speaking of web-based storage, every file we have is online, only online, and available from anywhere at anytime.
The Gann Agency office will eventually recover from the drive-thru. But our operations were never affected.
Why? Because we prepare. Not just with insurance coverage, but with a vision.
Because where there is no vision, your operations will perish, at least temporarily. And a temporary close of business will set you back, even with insurance.
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