Tag Archives: Emergency Preparedness

Tame Those Pesky Details – April – 4 Great Lighting Options for that Unexpected Power Outage


TTPD – April – 4 Great Lighting Options for that Unexpected Power Outage

Total darkness. For miles…

I lived in California for a number of years, experiencing earthquakes both large and small, occasionally resulting in a loss of electricity. I also lived in an apartment where I was guaranteed the power would go out once a week. So, the question is, what do you do when the lights go out?

Let’s say you’re sitting in your home office in the evening, trying to finish a big project, when suddenly you’re cloaked in total darkness. Your natural tendency would be to grab your cell phone and turn on the flashlight so you could assess just how far reaching the outage was. That’s fine for a bit but what do you do when it goes on for hours? How are you prepared?

In case you’re wondering why I’m presenting this topic, I’m following along with my book, Tame Those Pesky Details (TTPD), where I focus on one specific item each month to keep your business in tip top shape. April is the month for Emergency Preparedness. I’ve written at length about backing up your backup, so today I’m addressing a more practical issue.

If you think it’s no big deal to be without lights, you have to realize that if you don’t have lights, you don’t have Internet either. You can get stir crazy pretty quickly. It also means the microwave doesn’t work nor does the hot water heater. But, I digress…

I actually was in this situation a few years ago. When I lived in California, I was diligent about maintaining my earthquake kit as well as having emerging lighting options throughout the house. However, once I moved to Nevada – even though the state is number three in earthquakes behind California and Alaska – I put my kit and lights on a high shelf in the garage. I got lazy.

Then the power went out. I didn’t have my phone at my side, so I banged and felt my way to find it. Then, while on hold with the power company to find out the extent of the outage, I climbed an unopened ladder pushed against a pile of unpacked boxes and managed to grab my Coleman dining lanterns with the end of a broomstick. The power would be out at least till the next morning. I grabbed all my lanterns and turned them on, one of the few houses on the street to have some light.

After that experience, I made sure that every room had a lantern of some sort. I’m never more than a few feet away from a light source. I keep a flashlight in my nightstand and have others sprinkled around the house. And I still want more!

In the photo, I’ve shown some of my favorite emergency light options. You might want to buy a couple to keep handy next time you wind up in the dark.

  1. Brooklyn Lantern. These were advertised on television for months, but I bought mine at Target. You can also find it at Amazon. I really purchased it because the light is supposed to last 10,000 hours or something like that, and it’s dimmable. I only have a couple of these and while not my absolute favorite, they give off a decent amount of light and you shouldn’t need to replace the batteries or bulbs for a while.
  2. Coleman dining lantern. This is my absolute favorite! I’ve had these for years. They don’t have this exact style any more, but I’m tempted to buy some new ones. Just one will really light a room. And, I looked for a long time to find one that uses regular D batteries instead of the lantern battery. I like that it has a hook on the top so you can carry if you need to. Love love love it!
  3. Bell and Howell tactical flashlight. I’d been reading a lot about the benefits of having a tactical flashlight, and this one is great! It’s very bright so it lights a wide area, but you can also focus the light if you need to. It’s a bit heavy, but definitely worth it.
  4. Blocklite. This is another of my absolute favorites. I was reading about this on a blog one day, and just had to get one. You simply attach the light to a 9v battery and you have an instant flashlight! It has two settings, which is nice. I’ve used it to walk out to check the mail at night and to make sure I got everything out of my hamper, which is dark purple and in the corner of my closet. It’s come in handy so many times, I’d buy them as stocking stuffers for all your loves.

I also purchased a hand crank lantern with a USB plug to recharge my phone or any other small device. Oftentimes, we charge our phones at night and you might just need a few extra minutes that the hand crank can provide.

This may not be the most glamorous post, but I’m here to make you ponder what you need to make your life and business more efficient. Preparing for emergencies is part of the responsibilities of you, the CEO of your business. I’ll cover other emergency topics in the future.

If you’d like to follow along through the year, purchase your copy of Tame Those Pesky Details. (link below) Print books will be available soon!

How have you prepared your business for emergencies?  I’d love to hear! Leave a comment below.

I do hope you’ll enjoy my blog posts, Instagram photos and tweets on Twitter!

Enjoy!

Cindi

Tame Those Pesky Details – February – How well can your business run without you?

TTPD – February – How well can your business run without you?

If you’re a solopreneur or small business owner, chances are you’re focused on growing your business. Or, at the very least, maintaining a smooth operation. A good mindset to have, but what happens when – Heaven forbid – something unexpected occurs and you’re unable to helm the day-to-day activities of your company?

If you were part of a large organization, there would be multiple people at the ready to take over in your absence. But, if you’re a one-person show, it’s very possible that no one else has a complete understanding of how your business is run. Every business has so many different facets that it’s more than just leaving passwords, mission statements and banking information for your temporary CEO; contracts, trademarks and even fonts and colors of your logo are all crucial information.

I’m following along with my book, Tame Those Pesky Details (TTPD), where I focus on one specific item each month to keep your business in tip top shape, February is Legalities and it covers a wide-range of issues. Having a way to provide a temporary – or even permanent – means of understanding and operating your business will bring peace of mind.

I’ve been busy updating a lot of personal and business items lately, and although I have binders and electronic and paper files filled with the proper data, I realized that it would take a concerted effort for someone to step into my shoes should that unexpected need arise. I also discovered that I was missing some crucial information because my business has been operating for so long and I’ve moved so many times, some things have gotten misplaced.

I also think in terms of emergency preparedness. I keep hearing stories of people who had to leave their homes with moments’ notice and left behind some key business info because they were unprepared and were worried about saving their lives, which, of course, is most important.

In addition, I’m looking forward to expanding my business in the foreseeable future. Parts of this data collection can easily be organized into an employee reference manual. A little extra work up front will pay big dividends down the line. Again, this is all normal in a larger organization, but smaller businesses might not view this as a high priority. I’m all about having a solid foundation to build upon so this data collection and coordination will benefit me greatly as I move forward. Having all my info at the ready will save me time and frustration and enable me to easily update any changes. Whew!

While you’re organizing your business, think about vendors or employees who perform key tasks that you personally don’t know how to do, for example, adding/deleting items from your online store. This may seem like a small item but your inability to make these simple changes can have an impact. That employee or vendor can disappear on a moment’s notice and your ability to run your business smoothly will be hampered until you either learn how to do it or find someone new to work with.

Aside from determining the safest place to keep this info, my next decision is whom to share it with. And, I’m even thinking about a permanent succession plan for down the road. If there’s someone in my family I’d like to groom to take over the business, one can never start the process too early!

It will take a couple of months to pull this all together, I suspect, but once I’ve completed it, I’ll post a free checklist in my store. I might even do another blog post with more details. So, keep your eyes on all my social media so you can access the information as soon as possible.

I do hope you’ll enjoy my blog posts, Instagram photos and tweets on Twitter!

If you’d like to follow along through the year, purchase your copy of Tame Those Pesky Details. (link below) Print books will be available soon!

How do you organize your business data? Do you have a plan for someone to take over in case of emergency? Have you ever experienced the need to have someone step in your shoes? I’d love to hear all about it. Please leave details in the comments below.

Enjoy!

Cindi