Strategies for the 4th Quarter
Article By: Rich Silva – Founder – Pain Point IT Solutions, Inc.
Football season is upon us, which means that it is September and in an ironic set of circumstances, we are rapidly approaching the end of the year, a.k.a. the 4th quarter. In football, a coach plans for the 4th quarter whether it be to stay in the game, attempt to get ahead in the game, or just get through the game with everyone healthy and uninjured. Similarly, business owners should take this late third quarter to reflect on ways they will stay in business, attempt to get ahead of their competition, and get through the quarter with their business and data healthy and uninjured. Unfortunately, despite best efforts, there is always the possibility that an injury will occur and coaches have backup players on the bench to replace them. Do you as a business owner, have the backups in place to stay in the game ? Here is a brief checklist of things that you should consider thinking about before it's too late.
1) Review your data backup plan.
You should feel confident that the data you produce each and every day in the form of spreadsheet entries, e-mails, accounting entries, etc. etc. is being backed up and that someone is dedicated to watching to make sure they are indeed being backed up so that when a computer "injury" occurs, you can stay in the game..
2) Review your data recovery plan.
Data backup is only half the battle. You must feel confident that the person you have watching the data backups is also qualified to recover the data.
3) Take the time to understand the difference between data recovery and system recovery.
Know the difference between data recovery and system recovery? A data recovery plan recovers your files. A system recovery plan recovers your computer or server system to the way it was prior to injury. Do you know how to rebuild a server from scratch, where all of your software and software licenses are, how long the process takes, and how much it will cost you in hourly fees to have a qualified person in to do it for you?
4) Have a seasoned IT professional come in and pick their brain.
Many IT professionals such as myself welcome the opportunity to come in and listen to you discuss your IT pain points and help you gain some insights on the technology out there that can address them. Some IT consultants will charge a service fee to come out and do an evaluation and have that discussion, some do not. It never hurts to make the 30-60 minute appointment to get you at least started on the right track.
The Bottom Line
As we approach the 4th quarter, like a head coach in football, you as a business owner (or person who cares to have a business to go to so you can stay employed) need to prepare to stay in the game and live to play out the season. Here, late in the 3rd quarter is a great time to start thinking about the strategies you will deploy to be sure if an injury occurs to your business, you have the appropriate personnel, expertise, and replacements in place to survive.