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Business Owners, What Is Your Plan B?

Business StrategyIn the last four months we (the people who live in the Northeast U.S.) have been slammed with two major weather events which have basically shut down airports, businesses, electricity and more. Why do we live where we live? If this is how it is going to be here, maybe it is time to move to Louisiana, at least the food there is great!

What is clear if you own your own business and run your own enterprise, how much do forces not in your effective control have an impact on you and your business? Some may say, “Well I run a business totally on the internet, so it is not me you are talking about.”

Not so fast. Your servers, your ordering system or the stability of the internet as a vehicle for your business are all exactly the subject.

Essentially what is your Plan B? Not too long ago I wrote an article on change. I recommend you read that if you have not yet. Similar to a resistance to change, is the assumption you do not need to prepare for the unknown events which may impact your business. Of course you are not able to prepare for everything. This does not mean to ignore certain events which may be mapped out as potential threats to your business operations.

This does not have to be a complicated ordeal as the effort needed would depend upon the size and breadth of your business. A first step would be to address backup storage and backup systems. Consider how you would work if there were no access at all at your regular locations to any electricity or the internet. What is your Plan B?

If you have a retail location and the weight of the snow forces your roof to cave into your retail space, do you have alternate sources of obtaining inventory quickly to fulfill sales and to continue to sell from a remote location for a period of time? What is your Plan B?

You are encouraged to take a few minutes or more as needed and begin to write out where you and your business are exposed and specifically to what. Don’t worry about solutions yet. Spend the first portion of your time on this topic identifying the areas and the exposure. Share the list with your advisers and your key employees. See what else is added to the list. Once this is completed, and of course this is a fluid document which may be added to at all times, now consider alternative solutions and Plan B methods for each line item. The ability to take the time to conduct this effort will prove to be priceless, should you ever need to place your Plan B into action.

Mitch Tublin is an advanced certified personal and executive coach who lives in Stamford,CT.


  1. I so agree that back up plans are needed for one’s business. Good points about if you are not brick and mortar you are still at risk.

    • Mitch Tublin Business Success Coach says

      We cannot plan for everything. This does not mean we do not plan for anything.

  2. Mitch, great article. We are so often focused on giving something “all we have got” that we forget a Plan B is an uber-important aspect of planning and focus. Life does not always go as planned and it is smart to get ahead of that.

    • Mitch Tublin Business Success Coach says

      Yes, a Plan B approach works. It may not be the perfect solution.
      At least it is a starting point.

  3. Great topic to get us thinking about contingency plans! thanks Mitch

    • Mitch Tublin Business Success Coach says

      Like having some ingredients in inventory at home for some last minute guests who arrive for dinner unannounced.

  4. I actually do think about Plan B some times Mitch and I realize that I feel so fortunate to have choice between 2 licenses and 2 biz models to work should anything unforeseen happen with one of them. Thanks for this good reminder.

  5. My Plan B is to enjoy the adventure. We’ve been hit by a hurricane, and blizzard and another pretty intense snow storm in just a few months time. As I am planning a big event for the “off” (non-summer) season where I live, I did take the possible weather issues into account and tried to find a time that is after hurricane season and before blizzard season. After the hurricane, we lost power for a week and internet access in our home for longer. My Plan B was to scale back my business and enjoy the adventure, and it was a joyful adventure for us. (We were lucky to not have any physical damage from the storm.) I think part of planning is also to be ready to go with the flow and handle the unexpected in a a calm way, resting assured that if you let them, ALL circumstances are offered FOR your ultimate growth. It was in that down-time after Hurrican Sandy, for instance, that I found clarity on the title and theme of my book.
    With love,
    Katherine C. H. E.
    Author, Be True Rich

    • Mitch Tublin Business Success Coach says

      You certainly know where this is coming from!

  6. I’ve heard people say the same thing “I have an Internet business”. You bring up great points and doing a “check up” of your contingency plan is an excellent idea.

    • Mitch Tublin Business Success Coach says

      Exactly! It is an integral part of conducting our business.