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Another One Rides the Bus It's time to get planning!

December 07, 2021 11:17 AM | Dara Cormany (Administrator)

So, it’s like this: just like everyone else, I’m going through some “stuff”. As I’ve long said, I’m not a fan of real life. File this under “Is what it is”. Subheading: “Oh yeah? You think you’ve got it bad? Let me tell you about my problems”.

As a result of this “stuff”, it’s got me thinking a lot about planning. Planning ahead. Worst case scenarios. You know…what happens when I get hit by the proverbial bus.

Note that I wrote “when”, and not “if”. Now that’s planning. At any rate…

I realized that, as cheery a topic as it is, this would make for an interesting column to share. As I started to formulate it (if you ever want to know about the creative process I use, look up “wait until the last minute and then panic”), the concept and points were coming to me quite easily. And then I remembered why.

I wrote about this already. Back in 2017. Same concept: what happens to what we’ve built, or are in the process of building, should we get hit by that bus?

It’s nice to know that someone reads and remembers my columns. I just wish it wasn’t always me.

That column had been primarily about protecting your business. This time…let’s get personal.

I think this is an important subject which should be revisited regularly. If you followed my advice four years ago it’s time to update the plan. The tech items and services I recommended then are probably obsolete anyway. Just as with estate planning, this is a fluid thing which needs to be revisited and updated regularly.

In researching this, I just learned that the odds of actually getting hit by a bus is 495,000 to 1. I thought that was something you might want to know.

Further research shows that the average person has about 130 different online accounts, such as multiple email addresses, bank accounts, credit cards, games to which you subscribe, shopping, and so forth. If you’re as smart as I want to believe you are (after all, you read my columns), you’re not using the same password for each. You’re also not using “password” as your password. And please don’t think you’re being clever by using “passw0rd”.

I’m reminded of the scene from the lesser-classic “Space Balls”, where the King has to provide a secret combination. It turns out that combination is 1-2-3-4-5, about which the character Dark Helmet says “That’s the kind of thing an idiot would have on his luggage”. Don’t be that idiot…mix up your passwords.

How are you supposed to remember 130+ different passwords? You’re not expected to. Save them in some sort of document. You think that writing them down on a piece of paper is a bad idea? It’s not great…but it’s better than thinking “ah…I’ll remember it”. Keep a digital document. As it turns out, the worst possible method for saving passwords is also the most popular. Irony, you’re a cruel bus-driver.

Why are you doing this? For one thing, as we get older, we get more forgetful. For another thing, we get more forgetful. Having a list…somewhere…saves many frustrating minutes trying to (a) remember what the password is, and (2) going through the tedious, time-sucking steps of having to reset your password.

Another reason for doing this? That aforementioned bus. More importantly, you’ve got to have someone who has access to this list. Think about it: who do you trust with the keys to the kingdom? You’re gonna have to take a leap of faith here.

Look at it this way: you’re doing someone else a favor by having all your information readily available for when that time comes. It’s literally the last nice thing you are doing for that person.

I know…it’s easier said than done. I may have to follow my own advice. Because that’s worked out for me up until now.

Mike Schenker, MAS, is “all that” at Mike Schenker, Consulting, where he assists businesses entering the promotional products industry, mentors professionals, and offers association management. He is a promotional industry veteran and member of the Specialty Advertising Association of Greater New York (SAAGNY) Hall of Fame. He can be reached at mike@mikeschenker.com.

Used with permission from PromoCorner

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