You never know what can happen to you. Cars get into accidents, people get attacked by wild animals, data gets stolen, cities get hit by hurricanes and other natural disasters, etc. As a business owner, you need to be prepared for everything, so that once something happens to your business, you can continue delivering your products and services to clients – you need to be provided with a business continuity plan.
However, while you might be the owner, you should still have your management team’s support on this idea, and sometimes getting their approval can be harder than it seems. If you want to find out more about how to secure the management support for business continuity, all you have to do is keep reading.
So, without any further ado, let’s jump right into it.
What’s the Difference between Risk Management and Business Continuity?
There’s no denying that, sometimes, convincing your management team that a business continuity plan is crucial will not be a piece of cake. They will try to come up with several arguments about why it is not a good idea.
One of the arguments managers might use when it comes to creating a business continuity plan is that there is already a risk management plan prepared. However, even though they might not seem like it initially, these two concepts are entirely different.
As experts from Continuity2.com notice, “The definition of Business Continuity (BC), by the official standard (ISO 22301), is ‘The capability of the organization to continue delivery of products or services at acceptable predefined levels following a disruptive incident.’ In layman’s terms, therefore, we can determine that RM is about attempting to avoid business disruption from happening entirely, whereas BC focuses on how to maintain functionality should a disruption occur, by predetermining what the minimum levels of staff, systems, resources, etc. are required before operations could continue within a company. ”
Understand the Risk Tolerance
In most cases, making assumptions or predictions in business is the last thing you should do. However, when it comes to business management, a situation is a little different. If you think that your management team cares about your company’s future, you can also assume that they will care about business continuity and disaster recovery.
By assuming that, you are allowing your focus to go from trying to prove that business continuity is a must, to providing facts about risk, that will enable your team to make the best decisions possible about your recovery strategies.
Most probably, your management team also has a bias towards being risk-averse – this defines your company’s risk tolerance. Keep in mind that some companies are going to be more risk-averse than others depending on the management team. What’s more, some of them cannot accept the risks due to legal reasons.
Assess the Reality of Risk
Once you know more or less the risk tolerance of the management team in your company, it’s time for the next step – providing them with a case study that endorses a logical business continuity/disaster recovery plan based on rational facts and research.
The sad truth is that if you don’t have a logical disaster recovery plan prepared, then once a disaster strikes, the existence of your business will be threatened. Of course, you can provide your management team with facts and history of natural disasters that have happened in your area. However, you also need to make them aware that disasters caused by humans are also very much a threat – especially since they are unpredictable. They can happen anywhere, at any moment, and to anyone.
If you don’t have a business continuity plan prepared for those types of situations as well, then you might have to face very serious long-term consequences. Sometimes, it can be so bad that it takes you out of business.
Be Sure to Test It Out
If you really want to know if your business will survive no matter what happens, you can always create a fake scenario, and make your company go through a mock exam, to see how it will manage if the things come to it.
No matter if it is successful or not really, it can serve as a great insight into how ready your organization actually is and what are the things you and your management team still need to work on.
The Bottom Line
Life is unpredictable – one second, everything can be going alright, and the next, you might be facing something you never thought you would. The same happens to businesses, and as a business owner, your responsibility is to make sure that even if something happens, your business still continues to thrive, and deliver their services and products like it used to – something for which you need a business continuity plan.
However, it is understandable that even though the final decision might be yours, you still need, or at least want to have, the approval of your management team. We hope that our article gave you a better understanding of how you can achieve that.