What to Do When... Your Business Is Hit by the Flu

Coughing. Fever. Body aches. Once again, it's the time of year when 5-20 percent of Americans get the flu. Despite being ill, many of these people (59 percent, to be exact) report to work, potentially spreading the virus to coworkers. Each year the flu costs the U.S. economy $180 billion in profits and lost productivity. We have outlined some best practices for you and your employees to follow to keep your workplace healthy and productive,
    woman blowing nose at work
  • Get a flu shot. To encourage employees to follow suit, arrange for on-site vaccinations.
  • Frequently wash hands and practice good respiratory etiquette (covering coughs and sneezes).
  • Send home employees who appear to have flu symptoms and establish policies on when they should return to work.
  • Provide options for working from home if possible.
  • Regularly disinfect surfaces that employees are frequently in contact with.
Read more about what you can do to avoid spreading the flu here.

How Playing With Legos Helps With Disaster Recovery

Lego disaster recovery robot
Image courtesy of the Brisbane Times
Research has shown that Legos are great for child development. But did you know that they can help with disaster recovery development as well?

The Queensland University of Technology’s Lego League, which includes fifty teams of nine- to 16-year-olds, recently participated in a challenge to build Lego robots that can assist in a series of disaster-related challenges, such as how to deliver food or how to navigate flood water and earthquake rubble.

QUT is on to something — not only for DR planners in the making but for grown-up planners as well. Tabletop exercises such as these may seem like child’s play, but don’t be fooled: They are crucial.

Here’s why:
  • You can play out any scenario without tying up resources (other than your Lego stash, that is).
  • You’re forced to step back and look at the big picture of your disaster recovery plan.
  • You get a grasp for how all the pieces of your plan fit together.
  • You encourage teamwork among your business’s staff.
  • You harness the power of imagination. (When working together as a team, you can discover ideas you never would have thought of otherwise.)

If you’re not quite sure where to start with planning a tabletop exercise, business continuity software can help you get the ball rolling. What are your favorite tabletop exercises?

[INFOGRAPHIC] When Severe Weather Strikes

Did you know that extreme heat caused 1,062 injuries in 2012? Check out this infographic for more severe weather facts, and look at our "What to Do When..." blog posts for severe weather and natural disaster safety tips.

When Severe Weather Strikes Infographic