Self, self, self
This assumption might be valid if the incident in question is limited in scope – such as a building, facilities, IT or supply chain issue – and doesn’t result in death, injury or personal hardship. But if it’s wider-reaching – for instance extreme weather, earthquake, flood, power failure, civil disturbance, terrorist incident or any of a whole host of potential events that affect the wider community – there’s a major problem with it.
The fact is that people are likely to be thinking of themselves, their families and their homes, rather than the organisation they work for. In which case, the business continuity plan is likely to rank somewhere near the bottom of the list of things on their minds. And their willingness to drop everything and come to the aid of the organisation is, perfectly reasonably, likely to be somewhere between low and zero.
Most people have lives, and responsibilities, outside of work. But it’s much easier to simply ignore this important fact when creating our business continuity plans, than to worry too much about it. So that’s precisely what many planners do. The trouble with this approach, however, is that whilst our plans might look ok on paper, they could well be doomed to failure from the outset if we actually have to put them into operation.