In mythology, the Muses were nine goddesses who symbolised the arts and sciences. Today, a muse is a person who serves as an artist’s inspiration to produce the best work they can.
Utilising this device is quite useful when I am developing and writing BC plans on behalf of organisations and departments. I find it helps to focus the plan.
Whether the organisation is one of manufacture or of service delivery, I have two muses in mind.
They are both anxious people.
The first is the person that has called and needs one of the organisation's key services or products.
The second is the person who works for the organisation and has to deliver that key service using the business continuity plan.
For me, business continuity is as simple as that, and all about people. Everything else comes from looking after the two muses. Profitability, sustainability, market share and all of the other things attached to business and services follow on from this approach.
I think that in order to get the best value and return on investment from BCM, we have to be in it for the long term. One might even call it, investing for the future.
Organisations may well see an immediate short term ROI if they face an early disruption and the BC plan comes through. Many teams would see this as a result, and be happy. However, this kind of result may well be what we are looking for in a plan, but in my view simple recovery is a superficial return, and not where the real added value lies.
So what then is the real value of BCM?
Well, a long term BCM programme can produce:
- Social capital from the workforce
- A loyal customer base
- A reliable and trustworthy reputation
- Team Confidence to face the slings and arrows of the real world
- Customer confidence
- Organisational strength
Now that is priceless.
John Ball AFBCI is the Business Continuity Coordinator at Sussex and Surrey Police.