Does your small business have a Plan B?

Father's Day at Waterton 113I hope you all had great weekends. As I mentioned on Friday, I wanted you to all put down that business to-do list, and pick up your personal one. So, did anyone accomplish a personal goal, or finish up a personal project that work has been forcing you to neglect? I would love to hear your success stories.

In an effort to avoid hypocrisy, I really did my best to unplug, and focus on friends and family, instead of spreadsheets and deadlines. Father's Day in particular was just amazing. Just as I had hoped, taking the time away from my computer and really the internet in general really helped me focus on what's important.

The combination of my tech struggles last week, and my unplugged weekend really put things into perspective. As you'll read about tomorrow, I had some Windows issues, which brought me back to my slightly love/hate relationship with Linux. To top it off, I woke up this morning to a complete lack of internet. (which has obviously been resolved)

This started me thinking about my systems, and how much I rely on an always-on internet connection to accomplish the majority of my work. The more the media hypes up “the cloud”, the more I want to move my life online. Having that computer-agnostic existence, where any device with a data connection will get me to my files is a romantic idea. Unfortunately, a lack of internet suddenly leaves me with access to none of my files, or apps, or contacts.

So, what does this mean? Do I just unplug and go back to ledger books and a Rolodex? No, of course not. That would be crazy for the opposite reasons. What it does mean, is that I really need to make sure that I have a Plan B in place. If Windows falls apart, can I get my work done on another computer, or using another OS? If my internet connection is gone, can I still get to my important files, or generate reports for my clients?

What about you, and your business?

Do you have Plan B's for these types of work emergencies? If your computer broke down, your internet connection was missing, or the power in your building went out, would you still be able to make money? If not, it might be a good time to get those systems in place.

Hopefully you'll never need to use them, but you'll be one step ahead of your “cloud-only” competition if you do.