WOULD YOUR EMPLOYER SURVIVE A BIG INTERRUPTION?
According to Forbes' America's Fasting-Growing Cities in 2018, the Pacific Northwest has the top two! Boise is #1 and the Seattle Metropolitan area is ranked in the #2 slot. Living in the Seattle area, I can see and feel the impact to our housing market, freeways, job market and earthquake resiliency.
As this "BOOM" in our local economy grows, so do the numbers of people that have moved to our region. With this growth of numbers we also have a new population of folks that need to be educated on our region's inherent risks followed by what to do beforehand, during and after we have an interruption.
This responsibility will largely fall on our business owners and employers to educate and protect these newcomers and those of us who have been here for some time. All organizations should be aiming to build an earthquake resilient business. Many businesses will develop very in depth plans for response and recovery, whereas many others will elect to "do-nothing" and hope for the best. If your organization falls into the latter category, the likelihood is that the failure to plan beforehand will result in a failure of the business after the event.
To avoid falling into the second group, we recommend doing something today. Talk to leadership about the importance of having a plan in place, training on that plan and testing it regularly. What should be in that plan should be specific to your business and thus will differ from organization to organization. The process enlisted to build a plan may vary as well, however all plans should universally plan for LIFE SAFETY as the #1 priority.
Regardless of what plans you have in place, the people, rather than the 3-ring binder housing the plan(s), are and will be your greatest asset after an interruption. Thus, it makes sense to invest and train them to a level in which they know what to do with little or no thought. Reaction is best if it becomes learned and thus automatic.
At a minimum, educate your staff and/or colleagues on the following:
1. What are the risks (natural, biological and man-made) inherent to your organization?
2. What can you do before to prepare? (make plans, stock supplies, get trained, etc.)
3. Where should you prepare? (work, home, school, etc.)
4. What should you do if you encounter an event? (recommended response)
5. What are the expectations of the organization? What type of support can the organization provide post incident? (Recovery strategies)
We suggest adapting a robust life safety training program for all of your colleagues. Make sure to include life safety training into your on-boarding process and regularly provide refreshers to staff on all of your emergency response procedures.
Keeping our business doors open after a regional interruption is critical to our communities resilience. These small steps can lead to the creation of a more resilient organization and in tandem community. If your organization is in need of assistance in planning, training or testing, please contact HT2 today.
Contact HT2 to learn more about preparedness measures or to schedule a staff presentation, safety walk, tabletop exercise, drill or general consultation with HT2, please Click Here!