Many entrepreneurs pride themselves on being great multitaskers. It is often required of small- to medium-sized business owners to wear numerous hats, but what happens when a natural disaster strikes? Keeping tabs on all aspects of a company is one thing, but when the rebuilding process begins, the process of managing a business is not going to be what it was before.
William Akers, mayor of Seaside Heights, New Jersey, has owned Bobber's Family Restaurant with his wife since 1985 and has been in office since 2011. After Hurricane Sandy struck last October, Akers has worked hard to keep his business and town functioning as normally as possible.
Akers explained to the Ocean County Signal that his eatery was luckier than most— it suffered minor wind damage and needed a new furnace and two new hot-water heaters. He added that 90 percent of Seaside Heights' businesses are up and running. The bills and expenses don't stop, Akers said, and organizations can't make money unless they're open.
The Times of Trenton explained how Mercer County's Small Business Development Center is making it a point to visit companies and see what can be done to help them get back on their feet faster.
"The damage here wasn't what it was along the shore," regional director Lorraine Allen said in the release. "But it has taken a toll and we want our business community to understand they have to be prepared for the next disaster."
Business owners cannot always depend on such firms, or hope that loans—from either family members or government organizations—will be enough. Commercial property insurance must be a necessity, so that entrepreneurs can recover quickly and return to normalcy sooner than if they were paying for repairs out of pocket.