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Planning for emergencies


I’m sure you’ve seen “Lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part” on a photocopied flyer at a variety of service providers’ locations. Most of the time it’s less a business philosophy (they seem to come through for you every time, don’t they?) than a blunt hint – a prod that, with a little planning, emergencies can be avoided.


Plain and simple, the best way for any service provider – including Malachy Parts & Service – to make sure your business runs smoothly is through scheduled maintenance. What’s the most common planned maintenance you probably pay for twice a year? A dental cleaning and check-up. Not your favorite thing to do, but there you are, nodding and grunting as the hygienist or dentist asks you questions. The American Dental Association is very proud to keep track of the impressive statistics that show that people who get regular dental checkups have a very low instance of serious dental “emergencies” that would require an expensive and sometimes drastic procedure.


Do you see where I’m going with this? If you’re in the food service industry, your commercial kitchen is your teeth and Malachy is your dentist. We are here 24/7 if you do have an emergency, but everybody would be much happier if you scheduled regular checkups for your kitchen. It’s almost always more affordable for you and we can head off major catastrophes (like that time you needed a new refrigerator yesterday) so you can work major purchases into your budget planning.


What other emergencies can be diminished with planning?  Were you ever advised to save for a rainy day?  Rain we can handle, right? But these days severe weather like hurricanes, blizzards and ice storms can derail your cash flow in the blink of an eye. You probably can also predict when a flu bug will take out half of your staff – in the heart of winter and then again in early spring.


And just what, you may ask, can you do to plan for weather or staffing emergencies? If a three-day shut down due to weather is all that’s between you and needing to borrow money to pay bills, it’s time for a meeting with your accountant or bookkeeper to determine where you can trim costs. That’s going to help you not just until your customers start venturing out after severe weather but also for the rest of the year. And, believe it or not, an internal hand washing campaign that emphasizes/reminds employees to frequently wash their hands and use hand sanitizer can reduce contagion by as much as 75 percent. Go fancy and distribute small containers of hand sanitizer as part of your efforts.


Rotten teeth don’t happen overnight and, with the exception of Godzilla stomping through your city, most other emergencies your business might face don’t happen overnight either. Your efforts don’t pay off until an actual emergency occurs, but if (or when) it does, you’ll be the person who stayed calm under pressure because you planned.