Quarterly spotlight

MOST SMALL BUSINESSES
ARE UNPREPARED
FOR CATASTROPHIC EVENTS

Despite an alarming number of high-profile natural disasters over the past year, most small businesses surprisingly do not have official plans to deal with them.

23% of small businesses
have no emergency plan.

Majorities of small business owners do not have any plans in place to cope with a natural disaster (65%) or inclement weather (65%). Half (50%) have plans to prevent theft and deter intruders, and 47% have a plan to combat cybercrime. Nearly one-quarter (23%) have no plan in place to deal with any of these events.

When it comes to cybercrime—a key concern of small businesses surveyed in Q3—those in the Professional Services industry and businesses with more than 20 employees are most likely to be prepared.

While most small business owners (68%) have never had to unexpectedly close their business, for an extended period, of those who have, most cite inclement weather or natural disasters as the reason for the closure.

Expert point of view

Disasters are not a matter of if, but when. This is why every business owner, no matter the business size, needs to develop a disaster plan now. Developing a list of vendors and contacts, backing up key files on cloud storage, and disseminating an employee emergency phone tree are all simple steps to get you started that will help you reopen sooner when a disaster strikes.
ann beauchesne

MARC DECOURCEY
Senior Vice President
U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation

How Prepared
Are Small Businesses?

Stories from the front line

NightLight Pediatric Urgent Care cleanup in the wake of Hurricane Harvey in Sugarland, Texas.

We’re in the process of rebuilding one of our locations that flooded after the storm, and we’ve learned a lot...You can never be too prepared for a disaster and it’s aftermath. If you aren’t it can really take a toll on you financially.
ann beauchesne

ZAWADI BRYANT
CEO
NightLight Pediatric Urgent Care
Sugarland, Texas

You can never be too prepared. And plugging into our local community and its plans goes a long way in knowing where to find help if needed or where to give help when people need you...Even if you are okay, your customers might not be. And the longer it takes the community to get back on its feet, the more the aftermath can wreak financial havoc on your business.

LEIGH HARTING
Owner
3 Daughters Brewing
St. Petersburg, Florida

Hurricane Charlie was our first brush with a major disaster at our restaurant…We were without power for an extended period of time and lost all of our food. While we recovered, there was definitely a financial impact on the business.

MARYANN FERENC
Owner
Mise en Place Restaurant
Tampa Bay, Florida

WHERE TO GET HELP

U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation

Corporate Citizenship Center
202-463-3133
ccc@uschamber.com