Rethinking Priorities

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    I don’t know about you, but the devastation wreaked by Katrina is incredibly distracting to me this week. Can you imagine losing a whole city?

    Although I don’t have access to TV images, the photos I’ve seen online and in my newspaper have been mesmerizing. And, miraculously, people are already talking about rebuilding and reopening and continuing with their future plans — even while small boats and big helicopters are still making their methodical rounds to search for survivors.

    I’m in the process of working on a piece about disaster recovery. Of all the experts I’ve spoken to, the advice from the CIO of one of the largest universities in the state of Louisiana (with major operations in New Orleans) was the most cogent:

    “First off, if disaster strikes, be prepared to see your mission make a sudden shift, and hope that you've a capable staff willing to be flexible and adapt to the change (I am fortunate to have such a staff). Second, disaster recovery planning efforts in…IT shops need to take on greater urgency, in terms of resources devoted to their planning and preparation.”

    Got that?

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