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Preparing Small Business for the Next Storm

Small business must come up with a game plan for power outages. Know who your local contacts are and be prepared for the next storm. Don't forget to support local business- you can make a difference!

BRACE YOURSELF- ANOTHER STORM MAY BE ON THE WAY!

Power outages, phone lines down, employees out of work and loss of income……....

Small business suffers during storm closings. Not only is it an inconvenience but it is total loss of revenue for local business. Communication and emergency plans are essential for all business, especially small business. As you know, most small business operates on a day to day basis with very little time left for long term planning. Small business must be proactive and be sure they have a plan in place.

Do you know who to contact during power outages for the most updated information?

Be sure to have the contact information readily available for all local town officials, local elected officials, utilities and emergency contacts. Know who your senators and representatives are. They are there to be a resource for you and your business. You should be able to count on them for support during challenging times. Be sure to reach out to them when you are in need of information.

Our family business discovered how challenging it was in 2011 and once again in 2012 when storms left us without power.  Having a plan in place is one way to stay ahead of the game. Thanks to the officials of the Town of Avon, the liaison for CL&P, dedicated employees and a strong commitment from our family, we were able to weather the storm.

Some small businesses were not so lucky. After a conversation I had the other day with a local small business owner I was able to get a true picture as to the economic toll a storm can make on a small business. That revenue does not get made up. His business was still without power five days later and he was unsure who to contact. He had attempted to contact CL&P and was not satisfied.  If you are operating on slim profit margins, a power outage can potentially be devastating. Being out of power for a day or so is manageable but being out of power for a week or more can cripple a small business.

How can you help?  One way to help our local community is to shop local. What I mean by that is simply- stay in town. Avon has some amazing small shops that you can find unique items for yourself or gifts for others. Check out Riverdale Farms and Old Avon Village. Recently, my aunt and I had a chance to “shop local” in support of small business. We made an effort to buy at least one item from each store we went into.  It felt good knowing that we supported local business owners who support our community. Not only was it a great shopping experience but a great way to spend time together. I highly recommend it!

On a side note, times change and we must embrace it.  From one local small business to another….we wish you well at Avon Cider Mill. As a kid growing up in Avon, the Avon Cider Mill was a great place to get cider and apples. They are closing their doors after many decades in Avon. It is a small family business that has provided a great service to our community. Try and stop by before they close at the end of the year. We appreciate all they have done to support the community!

As always, I look forward to hearing your comments and stories about family business. Please share!

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

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