CBIZ Sattler Adventure Sports Blog

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Ward, Hayden
/ Categories: BLOG Articles

Business Survival Guide Part 2: Contingency Planning

Adventure Sports Contingency Plan

In part 1 of our series,  Business Survival Plan: Guide to Finance, we focused on how to be financially secure during a crisis. Part 2 is about contingency planning to help you prepare for unexpected events minimizing their impact on your business. In this article, we will explore: how to create your own contingency plan, being proactive to decrease the impact of risks, and why these crucial plans are essential to the outdoor outfitter industry.

There is always the chance of an unforeseen event happening and disrupting your normal business operations – whether a natural disaster or  COVID-19.  While not all events will shut down your business like the pandemic, having a contingency plan for your adventure sports business is an absolute must in order to recover quickly from the disruption. How do you handle group cancellations? What about a client getting injured on the water or on a hike? Each of these situations need resolutions with specific steps to get your business back on track. Having a contingency plan will help you react quickly and ensure you are focused on the right steps to get your business up and running as quickly as possible.

How to create a contingency plan:

1. Identify the Risks

To help you determine what should be in your plan, you first need to identify all potential risks that could negatively impact your outfitters business. Natural disasters, a sudden influx of reservation cancellations, client injuries, decreased revenue, and  data breaches  are all risks that could have a negative effect on your business and your key resources. Prioritize and organize your information based on their impact to your business and probability of them occurring. Make sure you give higher priority and probability to events that have happened before, such as inclement weather, gear failure or equipment damage.

2. Determine the Essentials and Timelines

Once you know your risk, you need to identify ways to mitigate those risks. If an emergency should happen, what is necessary to keep your business running smoothly? This can include the internet, telephones, and other services like electricity. Construct a backup plan for each of the risks you identified earlier to keep these vital resources available. Make sure you have a step by step plan that outlines what to do when an event happens and who to contact to help you keep your business running. Create and keep a list of people and companies that may need to be contacted, such as utilities, insurance agent, backup crew, and others.

If you were unable to work, know who can step in for you and fill that position. Communicate who will be responsible for reporting an emergency and notifying the appropriate groups. Keep in mind what needs to be done in order to resume normal operations during the event (if possible) and after the impact of one. Clarify timelines for everything that should be completed after an event. 

3. Insure Your Business

Safeguard your outfitter business by mitigating risks through insurance. As an owner and guide, risks associated with equipment damage, liability, and even income protection in the event of a covered loss, need to be addressed in your policy. CBIZ Sattler Adventure Sports Insurance offers comprehensive coverage designed for your outdoor outfitters business. Having the right kind of insurance will help protect you against the specific risks your company faces. 

4. Keep Your Contact Information Up-to-Date

Although it may not be a huge part of your overarching contingency plan, periodically review contact information for your key resources. Take the time to write down emergency contact information, take a photo of it, and set it as your lock screen on your cell phone. Don’t forget to provide updated emergency contact information to your staff and guides. You never know what could happen!

5. Revisit and Adapt

Once plans have been created, make sure they are easily accessible and shared with everyone who would need to be aware of the plan. While there is no way to account for every possible scenario that could affect your business, you can at least identify the major events. Once your plan is in place, make sure you keep it up to date. Periodically revisit your strategy and make updates to ensure it reflects any changes to your business or list of emergency contacts. Take your employees through the plan several times, so it can be streamlined and performed with no hesitations.

Remember, owning an adventure sports business comes with risks, but you can help reduce those by creating a contingency plan and purchasing insurance coverage. Don’t carry the weight of the unknown. Let us help you protect your business and mitigate potential risks. Get the protection you need today and  request a free CBIZ Sattler Adventure Sport Insurance quote. Worry less and adventure more!

This blog may contain scenarios that are provided as examples only. In an actual claim situation, coverage is subject to the terms, conditions and exclusions of the policy issued. The information provided is general in nature and may be affected by changes in law or the interpretation of such laws. The reader is advised to contact a professional prior to taking any action based upon this information.

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CBIZ Sattler Adventure Sports Insurance, a division of CBIZ Insurance Services, Inc., is the largest insurer of adventure sports businesses in the United States. As part of an $850 million New York Stock Exchange traded company (CBZ), we developed a policy coverage to meet the needs for those in the recreation and outfitting industries. Our policy is underwritten by an A.M. Best Rated A++ (Superior) company.