Having a Backup Plan

No netIt’s important to have a backup plan. No, not that kind of backup plan (important though it is!).

Sometimes, the best laid plans go awry. We’ve covered backup plans for the classroom before, but it’s good to have such plans for other aspects of our work, too.

Today (September 19, as I’m writing this) was a case in point. We had some lovely (?) thunderstorms in the area this morning. They twice took the power to my part of campus down, and though the power outage was only momentary in both cases, it was enough to cut off internet access. It took a while for all the buildings on campus to get their access restored.

It didn’t take me long to determine what my post should be about this week.

Uh oh

I pretty quickly realized just how much of the work I do each day depends on reliable internet access, and how much my workflow gets disrupted when (a) I have no access to the internet and (b) I have no backup plan in place.

Fortunately, I had enough to do that didn’t require an internet connection that I was still able to get a lot accomplished. Still, my workflow was slowed down somewhat because I had to take the time to review my task list, looking for things that could be done offline.

The result is that I’m now likely to create an “offline” list in my task management app, review current tasks to see what could go on that list, and make sure any new tasks that could go on it also find their way there. That way, the next time I lose internet access, figuring out what I can do while offline won’t take more than a quick tap.

What about you? How do you prepare for those times when your ordinary workflow isn’t available to you? Let us know in the comments.

[Creative Commons licensed Flickr photo by roland]

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