It is one thing to expect the unexpected. It is quite another to accept the unexpected. Denial is a powerful thing, and even the best of us can be convinced that our plans are comprehensive and our preparedness complete.
The key ways to overcome this sort of complacency are to link crisis management and business continuity meaningfully, and to incorporate Adaptive Business Continuity principles that enable an organization to react quickly to the unexpected.
Consider that the past few years alone have seen increasingly active Atlantic hurricane seasons, major cyberattacks against global corporations, and secondary losses of key infrastructure following major disasters. Organizations in the public and private sectors are asking their teams to do more with less while also performing to higher standards. The need to recover quickly from losses is as important as ever, while in many cases the resources are thinner than they used to be. These realities require new and innovative approaches.
In addition, as our society grows increasingly interconnected, businesses, organizations, and governments will depend upon one another’s services to tighter and tighter tolerances. Utility and communications regulators, for example, are demanding that companies meet stricter reliability standards. This trend will continue for the foreseeable future.
Meanwhile, the costs and consequences of large-scale incidents will grow. Disaster events claimed more than 11,000 victims globally in 2018. The estimated losses from natural and manmade disasters in 2018 are estimated to be $155 billion, with global insured losses estimated to be around $79 billion, according to data from the Swiss Re Group.
These conditions paint a frightening picture, but therein lies the opportunity. A well-crafted business continuity program, clearly linked to crisis management activities, can be a source of value for an organization—not only in response to disaster, but on “blue sky days” too. The business continuity (BC) program and its practitioners can become meaningful business partners with the organization.