Are you in the commodity business?

If my wife and I want to go out to dinner and the restaurant is closed due to the weather or the employees calling in sick, they lost our business. They can't get those dollars back from me another day. If my son has strep throat and needs to get a prescription and the pharmacy computers are down, they lost our business. I will just go to the next pharmacy across the street. After all there is no difference in the medicine I get from CVS or Walgreens. Antibiotics are the same at any pharmacy. They can't get those dollars back another day.

When the grocery store fails to order enough milk when there is a snow storm approaching, they lost that business forever. I won't have the same need for a gallon of milk tomorrow. I would of bought it from someone else by then.

Businesses have several challenges they have to overcome to remain competitive. The one that gets overlooked often is preparing for a disaster. Some disasters are small and some large. If you run a business that deals in commodities your challenge is increased.

If you were the CEO of Carnegie Steel in the late 1800's you could afford delays in delivering your products. An outage was not as drastic because your product was in demand and only able to come from your company. You had a monopoly. Our relationship was also symbiotic, we both needed each other. You needed me to buy and I needed your product to sell my products.

Carnegie Steel didn't have to deal with IT security issues or a DDoS attack from Rockefeller Oil. They didn't need to plan for a fiber line getting cut. Hard drive crashes were not a concern.

Commodity businesses do have to worry about these. They must take the necessary steps to build in redundancy into all aspects of their business. If your customers dollar won't be there tomorrow then take the steps to ensure you deliver your products today.