Whose watch is it anyway?… Consultants and Business Continuity Planning

My dictionary defines “consultant” as: 1. a person who consults with another or others; 2. an expert who is called on for professional or technical advice or opinions. The Thesaurus lists: Advisor, expert, guide, mentor, counselor.

There are also multitudes of less formal (and less complimentary) definitions; among them, “A consultant is a person who borrows your watch to tell you the time. And then sends you a bill!

For full transparency, I have been a Business Continuity Management consultant for more than twenty years. From that perspective I offer this article as food for thought for those deciding whether to seek a consultant’s assistance with a Business Continuity project. For those who determine that working with a consultant is the best approach for their organization, it provides some suggestions to make the experience a more beneficial and positive one for all concerned.

> Read entire article Whose watch is it anyway?… Consultants and Business Continuity Planning | Betty A. Kildow | The Resilience Post

To BIA or not to BIA? Interim survey results

One of the differentiators of the new approach to business continuity advocated by Adaptive BC is the removal of the business impact analysis and risk assessment from the business continuity process. But is that a realistic proposal? Continuity Central is currently conducting a survey to assess whether this is a realistic proposal. The interim results to the survey, based on the first 150 responses, can be seen below. To read the full introduction to the survey and to take part, click here.

Do you think that it is possible to omit the risk assessment from the business continuity process?

Adaptive BC survey

  • Yes, and the resulting business continuity plan would be fully functional: 31.17%
  • Yes, but the resulting business continuity plan would be weakened: 12.99%
  • No, the risk assessment is a vital part of the business continuity process: 47.40%
  • I’m not sure: 8.44%

Do you think that it is possible to omit the business impact analysis from the business continuity process?

Adaptive BC survey 2

  • Yes: and the resulting business continuity plan would be fully functional: 21.43%
  • Yes: but the resulting business continuity plan would be weakened: 6.49%
  • No: the BIA is a vital part of the business continuity process: 65.58%
  • I’m not sure: 6.49%

Respondents were asked to identify the business continuity standard which they are most familiar with and then were asked the following question:

Thinking about compliance with the business continuity standard, which comes closest to your view:

Adaptive BC survey 3

  • A risk assessment and a BIA are both essential for compliance with this standard: 75.00%
  • A risk assessment is essential for compliance with this standard but not a BIA: 4.73%
  • A BIA is essential for compliance with this standard but not a risk assessment: 12.84%
  • Neither a risk assessment nor a BIA are essential for compliance with this standard: 7.43%

The survey will remain open for a further week.

Source: Continuity Central

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Are you surprised by the preliminary results? Do you believe that it is really possible to omit risk assessments and BIAs and still develop a functional business continuity plan? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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Survey: to BIA or not to BIA?

One of the differentiators of the new approach to Business Continuity advocated by Adaptive BC is the removal of the Business Impact Analysis and risk assessment from the business continuity process. But is that a realistic proposal? This survey seeks the views of business continuity professionals on this issue.

Complete the survey


Adaptive BC is an alternative approach to traditional business continuity planning. It is ‘based on the belief that the practices of traditional business continuity planning have become increasingly ineffectual’ and proposes nine principles to found its new approach. Of these the one which had proved to be the most controversial is the principle that Adaptive BC omits risk assessments and business impact analyses.

The rational behind this omission is as follows:

The risk assessment (RA) and the Business Impact Analysis (BIA) form the backbone of traditional continuity planning. They are considered fundamental components in virtually every best practice guide and industry standard. Employing these two practices leads practitioners along a trajectory that further entangles their work in the many related techniques of traditional continuity planning, along with the negative outcomes of these techniques. Practitioners should eliminate the use of the risk assessment and business impact analysis.

If you remove the BIA from the business continuity process, what, if anything, would take it’s place? David Lindstedt, one of the founders of the Adaptive BC approach, explains as follows:

“Let’s go ahead and assume that the BIA could, in fact, provide an hourly or daily cost in terms of lost revenue or lost market share for each service or department that could be temporarily eliminated due to an incident. (Naturally, I think this is a problematic assumption based on commentators and research, but let’s make the assumption anyway.) Shouldn’t leadership know what is important without having to conduct a BIA? Don’t the Board, executives, and top leadership have clear knowledge of what is most important to the continued functioning of their organization without a BIA? Or, perhaps more precisely, is leadership so inaccurate in their estimations of departmental value that the BIA properly changes these estimations and provides a more accurate picture of value to executives?”

Is it really possible to omit risk assessments and BIAs and still develop a functional business continuity plan? Please give your views in the following survey and in the comment section below.

Complete the survey

Source: ContinuityCentral

Five tips on how Business Continuity principles can protect your YouTube channel

”Your video isn’t monetised because it contains content that might not be appropriate for advertising”

Since the recent update of YouTube’s Rules and Community Guidelines, many Youtubers wake up in the morning with the fear of seeing this notification on one or many of their videos.

As Youtube is now granting itself the right to remove monetisation from videos (or worst, from an entire channel), many are opening their eyes about the volatility of their source of income. In the last few days, many channels have reported having a good number of their videos un-monetised (Mr. Repzion, Philip DeFranco, Chris Ray Gun, ETC News…).

For a clear understanding on the impact of the news Guidelines on Youtuber’s day to day life, I recommend watching Boogie2988’s recent informative video in the subject.

Below are 5 Business Continuity principles that can be applied to ensure your YouTube channel survives tough times.

1. Perform a Business Impact Analysis (BIA)

Simple! And so effective! Every business, no matter their size, should know for how long they can manage to face an interruption. Some can stop their activities for 2 weeks, others won’t withstand an interruption of more than 1 day. Understand your business requirements and your customers’ expectations. Knowing how long you can afford to stop will help you to plan adequately.

Your BIA will lead you to a solution that fits your needs and the particularities of your business.

Like any work of art, your videos are your creations and should be protected

2. Keep a copy of your videos away

YouTube channels can be hacked. Or terminated. Make sure you keep a copy of your videos on your computer and maybe in another location. You don’t have to be the one that realizes 3 years of hard work just vanished into thin air. Why not keeping physical backup of your videos outside your place of work (ex. a USB stick in a safe)? Like any work of art, your videos are your creations and needs to be protected.

3. Always have a secondary reliable source of income

Accessing to online fame can happen in seconds. It can also end as quicly. Although it may be extremely lucrative for some, YouTube adds revenue is as volatile and unpredictable as it gets. You never know when you will reach the bottom of Youtube’s money jar. A secondary source of income will make you independent from your channel.

4. Have a plan

>>Learn to create and manage a Business Continuity plan with ContinuityLink BCM Foundation Training

Face it. On the day you lose your source of income, your mood might not lead you to make the best decisions and not everyone is good at improv. You need to know in advance how long you can stop your operations without killing your business and what you have in place to fix the interruption.

Some will want to prepare a back-up PC and equipment stored away in case of a PC failure. Some will want to create a few weeks’ worth of videos in advance in case of being unable to create new content.

5. Plan for the worst

Find the worst thing that can happen to your business and the worst time it can happen. Being prepared for this, nothing else will scare you.

plan for the worst.png

Your business is precious

Make sure you treat it as such! This might seem basic for some, too many still forget these important precautions. For many, YouTube is only a mean to enjoy free videos with friends or to kill a few minutes during the day. But for other, however, YouTube is a full-time job that needs to be protected.


BCM The Movie – Licensed to BIA


If they made a movie of BCM, I wonder what the plot would be? Who would be the heroes and villains? And what type of movie would it actually be?

Would it be an all-action packed thriller? A sci-fi or a romcom perhaps? I know all BC and resilience professionals have a great sense of humour and show some passion! It could be an adventure movie or a historical period drama? Or what about an animated movie for all the family? A horror or maybe, a gangster film? I guess people would expect it to be disaster movie…

Hopefully in terms of the plot and not the box office takings!

Scene 1: Act 1

The name’s M…B.C.M (all said in your best Sean Connery accent). Ok, before all of the film spotters and Bond enthusiasts correct me, the 1999 James Bond movie ‘The world is not enough’ actually had Pierce Brosnan as the lead role; but I can’t do a Brosnan accent and I suspect, neither can you!

BCM (Business Continuity Management) is taking over the world! And why not: it has incredible powers and strength when it is applied correctly.

The world is awash with a growing army of BC professionals. A long, long time ago, people who wouldn’t even touch BCM with the proverbial barge pole, have now seen the goldeneye of opportunity (see what I did there?) and we have consultants in their hundred’s of thousands; they are in their smart Aston’s and they are everywhere.. in their evening wear.

BC professionals are a force to be reckoned with. Licensed to B.I.A.

The BC professionals, armed with their tools of the trade, membership subscriptions and qualifications, move in ‘mysterious circles’ along the dark passages of the many millions of businesses and organizations across the world. Their range of movement is inspiring as they go from the poorly lit shop floor right up to the expensively furnished C-Suite, hustling their BC stuff along the way.

To many of their non-BC colleagues, they bring dread and fear! Their reflections can’t be seen in the mirror (or so the legend says). Garlic breath wont keep them away either!

It’s no longer ‘look out here comes Spider-Man’ but more ‘oh shit, I’ve got a BCM meeting in my diary…help me please!

Armed with the ‘BC Folder of Mass Destruction’, the BC professional will take away that upbeat feeling of joy and happiness you had before you know it! ‘I’m going to B.I.A’t the crap out of you!

“For a sky high fee, they’ll provide you with drinks and theatrical winks*

Scene 2: Act 2

Far, far away, in a land that time forgot (forgive my artistic license), the powers that be who control global BC are plotting total domination of the world. Their aim and mission, to tell businesses and organizations this is how it is; take it or leave it. Suck it up suckers!

The smell of fine dining, cologne and suits, mingle with the air of authority and expectation. ‘Let us press on with our campaign; the universities are at full capacity with junior BC operatives in the making. Continue with the ancient proverbs production line for the media platforms, to try to force business leaders to want BCM more and make sure the factory that is producing the complex algorithms and flowcharts are at full speed. Shock tactics at the ready’.

“Things are looking good.. Maximillian, pass me one of those biscotti’s to have with my latte would you, old boy”

Scene 3: Act 3

In another land, a group of forward thinking professionals are working hard to try and make business resilience more for today. They use their amazing powers of intuition to drive their desire to make BC more accessible, available and achievable, for all businesses; not just those that can afford it.

They want to ensure the process is more simplified and people based. This renaissance resilience group are building up their momentum of followers, to take on the mighty force of the establishment. They believe with a passion, that there is the amazing opportunity to improve BC and its image. But who is listening? And who will join next?

They aren’t renegades or the resistance fighters; they have the passion and will to make a difference. #makeithappen

Its going to be a battle, but the ties are off!

Scene 4: Act 4

As the days and weeks of 2017 pass quickly, work continues around the world to ensure BCM has its rightful place in each organization. Exceptional BC professionals work tirelessly to scale the mountains and obstacles set before them; they continue to apply and refresh their organization’s BIA’s and plans with their fellow workers, knowing full well that their colleagues would rather have an appointment with the dentist than go through the what if scenario again!

But the BC professional is a resilient one; a charming individual with a persuasive nature. They can charm the ‘BIA pants off’ anyone.

Not so much a ‘martini, shaken not stirred’ but more ‘would you like a biscuit with that brew’?

Scene 5: Act 5 (The chase before the fight)

“Did you hear that?” asks Sebastian. “Hear what?” Penelope replied, folding down her ironed copy of The Continuity Chronicle.

“Someone is in the building” says Sebastian, the handsome looking, ex forces chap who is now head of the establishment. “Alert security” he commands with his devilishly rogue, velvet like tongue, simultaneously straightening his striped tie down the front of his chequered shirt. Looking good he silently thinks to himself as he plays with the club cufflinks on his sleeve.

“It will be those so called renaissance lot” he adds in a controlled, calm like manner. “How dare they attack our very fabric of our being, with their audacity to try to say things need to be improved for the benefit of all businesses, regardless of their size and turnover. Just what is the world coming to?” Damn cheek if you ask me” he adds with a slightly raised voice, causing some muffled responses from within the club room.

“Not even the government bodies think there is anything wrong with BCM; they would have mentioned it at one of the special balls we pay for if they had any concerns. I mean, just look at the take up and buy-in of BCM in 2017 by all businesses: it’s at an all time.. same!

There isn’t anything wrong?…is there..Penelope?”

To be continued……

* Is a lyric from the Divine Comedy song National Express

paul-kudrayAuthor: Paul Kudray, MSc FICPEM MEPS MAICP CBCI.

An international business resilience leader, Paul Kudray is a Fellow of the EPC and a Fellow of the Institute of Civil Protection and Emergency Management (FICPEM). He is a Lead Auditor for ISO 22301. In 2014 he founded his own consultancy and he is an excellent forward thinking resilience innovator and blogger. LinkedIn paul@kudrayconsulting.com.