When it comes to hurricanes or any other disasters that could hinder work, some business owners and industries are historically unfazed, with the “business as usual” mantra. I am among the professionals still on the grind in New York, even as cities on the East Coast have semi-shut down preparing for Ms. Slow (Hurricane) Sandy to hit. As long as there’s power, I’ll be working, since Sandy can’t possibly shut down the rest of the billions in the world with Internet access.
I’ve actually lived through Irene and other major storms, having grown up in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia, so these types of situations don’t usually put me in a panic, and I’ve also worked through disasters, having chosen media— a field that stays in the midst of anything that could be news—as a career pursuit.
So, if you’re reading this now, while in an office waiting for the power to go out, or at home still clocking in, know that I
feel your pain am with you.
Here are a few other jobs that get no pass when the winds of turmoil come along, whether weather-related or not.
Public Figures: City, county, state and federal leaders often have to make by-the-minute decisions even as perceived doom looms, gathering their teams to be prepared for whatever could come their way. That may mean ensuring shelters are staffed and ready to receive evacuees, orders to shut down public services, fiscal considerations, and plans for the aftermath. Just keep this in mind when you’re mad at your local government because the bank is closed or you can’t travel for vacation. Their main priority is to keep you safe, oftentimes while trying to balance the safety concerns of their own families.
Healthcare Providers: Even as a storm looms, the sick need attending to and preparation for any other emergencies must still be in place. Nurses, doctors, facilitators and administrators often still have to work into the wee hours of the morning, ensuring the care and safety of patients and others they are responsible for taking care of.
Digital/Web [Insert Job Title Here]: They don’t call it the Worldwide Web for nothing, and any businessperson worth their salt whose bread and butter comes from the Internet is probably still up and running as I type. From customer service reps and technicians to Web entrepreneurs and media professionals, I promise they are all doing something work-related as I type. Hey, who wants to lose out on the millions of eyes and ears now full of free time after being told they don’t have to work and who pretty much have no choice but to stay inside. And as I mentioned before, Sandy isn’t a worldwide phenom. Life around the world goes on— and so does Web commerce.
Shelter/Disaster Preparedness Professionals: When a hurricane or other weather-related situation happens, who do you think they call? Not the Ghostbusters. Evacuations involve detailed plans for gathering and housing those who must make temporary leave of their homes and oftentimes includes ensuring the homeless have a place to go as well. These professionals work around the clock to aid those in need and make sure they and their families are safe and sound.
Law Enforcement/Public Safety: Crime doesn’t sleep so neither do the police. Just because there’s a storm looming doesn’t mean criminals and conflict take a leave of absence. During any disaster, weather-related or not, these public servants are right alongside other public service workers working hand in hand to facilitate a safe environment during and after Sandy.
If you were fortunate enough to get a day off to relax and spend time with family today, kudos to you. The rest of us will be sure to help keep you safe, in the know or even entertained as life keeps going. Sandy can’t stop the hustle.
Are you among professionals still working through looming Hurricane Sandy? Use #SoundOff and hit me up @JPHazelwood on Twitter.