Being Prepared for Seasonal Hazards

January 2016

Snowy collageThis winter in Massachusetts, we’re enjoying unseasonably warm weather, and I am loving it. December 24 blessed us with a high temperature of 73F degrees. Today (two weeks later), it’s 57F degrees and we’re being pelted with torrential rain, which would typically be snow this time of year. Mark Twain said, “If you don’t like the weather in New England now, just wait a few minutes.” As we warily scathe through early January, New Englanders know Twain’s words to be true and complacency is not an option.

As hearty as we are, last winter’s powerful nor’easter in late January brought tremendous hardship. Winter Storm Juno disrupted transportation, with snow emergencies declared in six states and travel bans enacted in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut and New Jersey (that means all non-essential vehicles are banned from roadways). Juno’s maximum snowfall of 36 inches was recorded in a town less than ten miles from the Twirling Tiger Press home office. During the storm, the highest winds recorded were 75 mph and the highest gust recorded was 95 mph. The sustained high winds caused the fallen snow to drift in spots to some insurmountable heights…like my driveway. The record snow mounted on roofs and caused damaging ice dams to form on many homes, including mine. We all love a “snow day” here where school is canceled and the plows take the day to clear the roads, but this cleanup dragged on for days. And then there was more and more and more snow.

Typically, my fellow New Englanders and I slog through most snowy winters with little damage to property and spirit, but last year’s winter was a doozy—a wake-up call to be certain one is prepared for the worst events.

How do you prepare for the most challenging scenarios? Advanced planning is the answer. Just like in our custom content and content marketing business, we need to anticipate challenges that could arise—from the very good to the very bad. As business owners, we are constantly looking for ways to improve the creativity and delivery of our client’s publications, eNewsletters, blog posts and media relations work in order to maintain our high-quality standards. As we grow as a business, we’ve introduced more structure within the company, which benefits our clients as we are able to respond quickly to new requests because we have a solid infrastructure.

So far, I haven’t had to utilize the improvements I’ve made in preparation for a worst-case-scenario winter, but I am ready if needed. In addition to the usual winter gear, our household has added a generator, kept coolers at-hand (to store perishables in the event of a power loss), cleaned the fireplace and chimney, stored plenty of wood in the shed, tested flashlights in every room with spare batteries, been gifted a snow blower (courtesy of my mother-in-law, Rita), and bought bottled water and a heavy-duty roof rake (to remove snow from the roof…don’t worry, it has a very long extension pole). Oh, and we have enough nosh to keep us fed for many days.

It’s far more relaxing to weather the storms in life and in business when you are confident you are prepared.

—Maureen

This originally appeared in our January eNewsletter. Sign up for the newsletter today.