"Mickey Mouse popped out of my mind onto a drawing pad 20 years ago on a train ride from Manhattan to Hollywood at a time when business fortunes of my brother Roy and myself were at lowest ebb and disaster seemed right around the corner."
--- Walt Disney
The recent devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy has disrupted life along the northern East Coast. Homes have disappeared or have been totally demolished and lives have been lost. It is obvious from news reports that the impact of the storm did more damage than was expected. It is hard to imagine what folks are going through there and even storm experts stated that it would have been difficult, if not impossible to prepare for such an event.
However, there are things we can do to at least prepare our businesses for most disasters. These preparations include everything from as simple as making sure your employees know how to exit the building to providing CPR and First Aid training for your team members, to offering resources for an employee who is a victim of domestic violence. It is all about preparation and knowing how to look at things not just from outside the box, but from under it, above it, and even turning it upside down to have a look.
"I always tried to turn every disaster into an opportunity."
--- John D. Rockefeller
But surviving disasters is not just about life safety, though that is a wonderful thing. It is also about finding the silver lining within financial disasters as well. You know, it is making that lemonade out of lemons and then spicing it up a bit.
We never know when a disaster will hit, so it is always good to have a plan in place for those "just-in-case" moments. For example, just in case we have a downfall in business, we should have funds socked away to hold the business through the lean years.
"Sometimes it takes a natural disaster to reveal a social disaster."
--- Jim Wallis
Here in Central Florida we've been prepared for hurricanes ever since Hurricane Charley hit us in 2004. Prior to that, you could count on being somewhat safe from hurricanes so far inland, unless you are old enough to recall Hurricane David. Preparation for hurricanes (known as Preparation H for true Floridians) is just another example of how you can learn from previous disasters to strengthen your business for the future.
Another example is the downturn of the economy in 2008. The sign industry really took a hit for a couple of years and some sign businesses went out of business. But we learned and adapted, and we keep on truckin'.
"If I could learn to treat triumph and disaster the same, then I would find bliss."
--- Kathy Lee Gifford
If you are a football fan, then you know which coaches keep a cool head during victories as well as defeats. Tom Landry and Tony Dungy never change expression. Steve Spurrier and Bum Phillips show anger and frustration every game. All are or were great coaches, but for your business, team members need to see strength during times of disaster. Practice putting on your game face for those trying times.
"We cannot stop natural disasters but we can arm ourselves with knowledge: so many lives wouldn't have to be lost if there was enough disaster preparedness."
--- Petra Nemcova
There may be some truth to the above quote, but sometimes you just can't plan well enough. The key though is to at least do some planning and preparation before disaster strikes to protect your business and well-being of your team.
A Sustainable Business Case
By Marcia Y. Kinter
An increasing number of customers are asking their imagers about their sustainability efforts, either in face-to-face meetings or formal requests for proposals.
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ADA Signs How to Stay Compliant Without Sacrifice
By Dawn Nikithser
With ADA compliance laws on the minds of many sign manufacturers, it is important that compliant signs are both functional in terms of the letter of the law and still attractive in terms of getting people’s attention and drawing new business
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Window of a butcher in Texas:
"Red meat is not bad for you. Fuzzy green meat is bad for you"
In a second-hand store:
"Corduroy pillows are making headlines!"
As seen in an Irish pub:
"A bartender is just a pharmacist with a limited inventory"
We need those funny signs you've seen in your travels, come on, we know they're out there.
Send them to us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.