You know the business continuity theory, you’ve made the BC plan, but have you thought about how your target audience will receive your message? Dry documents tend to get filed in dusty places, never to be looked at again. So how can you capture and hold the attention of people in your organization? Perhaps a few tips from sales and marketing experts will help you to ‘sell’ your BC plan to the people who are the most important to its successful execution when it’s needed. That means managers and employees in your organisation, and possibly suppliers and business partners too.
The first step is to make sure you get the reader’s interest from the start. We’re not talking about sensational newspaper headlines, although even they might be useful sometimes. But one or two well-chosen, provable statistics can get people to pay attention. An example might be: ‘In a recent survey, 24% of companies said they had experienced a full data disaster’ (from Forrester Research, a well-known survey and research company).
Once you have your reader’s attention, you’ll want to keep that person involved while reading the rest of your plan.
- Use active verbs rather than passive ones. For example, ‘the HR director will ensure that all employees continue to report for work using the company’s internal website if physical access to the premises is not possible’.
- Use the pronoun ‘You’ when you can reasonably do so, to make sure readers understand that you are communicating to each one of them. For example, ‘You know how important it is to maintain business continuity for your activities and objectives at work’.
- Make sure that the results to be achieved are clearly expressed, not just the actions to be taken. For example, instead of just writing ‘apply the evacuation procedure’, write ‘make sure that all employees go to their safe assembly point, by applying the evacuation procedure’.
And finally, happy ‘selling’ of your business continuity plan!