Dateline October 2 - Austin
It’s been an interesting few weeks. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac get nationalized, sort of. We’re all now, as part owners of AIG, in the insurance business. Merrill Lynch gets sold and Lehman Brothers sinks beneath the waves. Congress fails to pass a $700 billion Hail Mary (sorry, I just can’t resist the puns) legislation and the Dow loses a record 777 points in a day. The Wilshire 5000 index, which measures the performance of all publicly traded companies in the US, lost $1,000,000,000,000 (that’s one trillion) on the same day. It’s a number that staggers the imagination and, in context, makes a $700B “rescue” somehow look reasonable – go figure. All of this comes on the heels of Hurricane Ike demolishing most of Zippy and my favorite part of the Gulf Coast – namely Galveston Island, and in particular, the Balinese Room (great restaurant and bar, and up until the 50’s, great gambling den). We love tiki.
The point in this discussion is that there are some things you can plan for (relaxed lending standards and lots of subprime loans in a heated real estate market are gonna eventually be a problem for somebody) and some things you can’t (the Balinese survived several hurricanes, economic downturns, raids by the Texas rangers and gets clobbered by a storm originally heading to South Texas – hundreds of miles away).
So…what’s your risk management plan? How are you going to protect your business, your data, and your customers from a major crisis? Can’t really protect them from a global financial meltdown, but you’d look like a fool in this day and age if you didn’t have remote backups of data in case of your own Hurricane Ike, or Hurricane Zippy (who can chew through a power cord faster than a Makita jigsaw). If you’ve ever had to try and recover or, worse, recreate data after a loss, you already know that the cost of the software to manage the problem in the first place seems like a ridiculously good deal right about then.
If you don’t already have solutions, definitely check out Backup Agent and DataExchange – two products that can really keep your data safe and your business running. They’re cheap insurance and simple to use.
Meanwhile, enjoy Fall wherever you are. It’s the best time of year for weather in Texas (finally not crazy hot) – and it’s football season, when entire small towns empty out on Friday nights (creates another interesting risk management scenario), and about 100,000 people dress up in burnt orange every other weekend or so here in Austin. I look awful in orange and Zippy don’t do clothes. Excellent at tailgates though.
Let’s be careful out there.