My reflections on #Year1 …

This has been an interesting week for me as I ‘celebrate’ my 1-year anniversary within my current organization: it started with visiting Gander to deliver ICS training with a great bunch of folks that care about their work and have fun at it, and ends today with updating internal audit project requests for clear gaps within the EM program. If anything, at the minimum, that I have learned this past week it is that “we” have a lot of work to do within my group and Company-wide for emergency planning. Our massive plans, our ad-hoc processes, our to-be-developed guidelines, our anemic checklists, and our strategic policy and direction need work. It has been a reality check of sorts; an opportunity to reflect of this past year’s work, my professional expectations, my review of the “art-of-the-possible” for transition from EM to BCM within the company. I am honestly over-whelmed at what we do within the operations-side of this organization and the passion of the folks, and what needs to be accomplished within our / my EM program to properly support their work. I am not musing about ‘advanced planning’, I’m talking about the basics of business continuity. Too often we write / talk about advanced techniques, giving our utmost, and how can technology help us achieve even more, when maybe we should be reviewing just how much we need to focus on the minimal requirements and expectations of our structures and plans.

There is a heavy weight on me as I plan for my return to work on Monday: I feel that *my* program, and its resources throughout the company, has 10+ years worth of work ahead of us to reach even a basic competent standard. Are we behind!? Are we stagnant!? Have we become complacent!? Are we documenting enough, too little, or at all!?

The good news is that I have hope (…and the skills, experience, intellect, vision and passion!). I have been granted opportunities to continually create things from a blank slate and to be a part of something that we can build up and out together. The goal now is to not be over-whelmed by the number of tasks, or the complexity of the projects that lie before me: it is to put our collective heads down and nose to the grind, and to seize the opportunities that are ripe to be exploited.

It is time to get to work! And like the Gander folks: care about your work, and have fun at it!


Old school? Nah…just good networking sense.

Technology allows us to have access to incredible resources and establish some non-linear connections that we may never have exploited in our analog world.

In my day-job I am constantly reminded of the relationship between the people that I provide business continuity advice and the technology that surrounds us to enable our business outcomes. A simple email to ask a non-time sensitive question gets fired off, and I seemingly forget about it until I get some type of response, mostly another email.

So it always impresses me when another colleague picks up the phone to talk about my email, even though an email would have sufficed. Sometimes my Spidey sense tingles when people *only* want to discuss sensitive issues by phone: our calls are not logged or recorded. Most of the time people (of all ages!) just like to talk to someone during the workday, other than the co-worker in the other work pit.

Today, out of the ether-blue, I get an unexpected phone call from a much-removed acquaintance that was responding to some email that I had fired off many weeks ago. To be honest: I really was not expecting any response to my message, as it only benefited my work!

We chatted about my message, sure. But, we also took the short time of this phone call to catch up on comings-and-goings. It was a nice chat. By taking the time to actually talk to each other, in the usual flow of a discussion, we both got something out of it.

Although the outcome of our chat was the use of another technology to support my original request, as a positive enabler, I sense that I would not have had as much buy-in had I simply received yet another email in my inbox to another benign email message.