In 1907, Baden Powell, an English soldier, established and wrote down the Boy Scout motto “Be Prepared”.

This was published in the Boy Scout Handbook in 1908 and in 1910 the international organization of Boy Scouts was formed.

This organization forms and promotes the motto of “Be ready” and is fundamental for all young Scouts between the ages of approximately 11 and 18.

The organization has over 30 million Scouts in over 161 countries and they are trained to “Always be ready”.

“Be ready” means being able and ready to react to any situation or emergency.

Boy Scouts have ranks to progress by learning more skills (similar to progressing through higher-level college degrees) and they can earn special merit badges to learn additional skills and knowledge (similar to continuing participation in additional specialized workshops and certifications) .

All of which can be used in real life and later in a career and business.

How is it that over 30 million young adults aged 11-18 around the world who are Scouts are well trained in the motto of “Be ready” and yet highly paid business leaders, executives and managers may be untrained and NOT competent to, “Be ready” what is called in business ‘Risk management’ ??

When I teach college-level business courses and economics courses, this is basically taught in my classes. There are in-depth questions and essay questions on my class exams that cover the topic of “Risk Management and Preparedness”.

Students who have not paid attention in class and have homework to learn this important subject will receive a failing grade in my class.

I cannot say that all universities and colleges teach to this higher standard to include this important business fundamental.

That’s part of the problem.

The other part of the problem is that business leaders, executives, managers, and government officials/leaders may not be trained in and proficient in this important fundamental; and yet they are promoted to important high-level positions with significant responsibilities and higher salaries.

There are many things that can affect business for which all businesses need to be “prepared”, have plans ready, at all times and of course, what in business is called “risk management”.

-Materials and shortages of raw materials

– Shortage of parts

– Shortage of necessary spare parts

-Supplies of various kinds of shortage

-Increase or decrease in demand for products or services

– Obsolescence of products and services

-Obsolete equipment hindering productivity and profitability

-Equipment failures

– Hacked or corrupted computer systems

-Facilities, operations, production damaged for any reason


– Disasters such as tornadoes, tornadoes, hurricanes, cyclones, typhoons, floods, earthquakes, lightning strikes, forest fires, facility fires, etc.

-Availability of natural resources

-Local power such as availability of electricity to operate

-Staffing and employee issues

-Key personnel or employees who are ill or resigned

-Training of employees and staff

-Turnover of employees and staff

-Social and union issues

-Technological changes

-Medicine/Healthcare and Diseases and Pandemics


-Laws and regulations

-Instability of countries

-Taxes & Tariffs



-And more

This applies to all businesses, corporations and services of all sizes, in all locations, local, regional, national, international.

This also applies to:

-all hospitals and medical facilities

– skilled nursing and assisted living

– important government services such as police, law enforcement, fire and rescue services and other emergency services

– building security services

– sanitation departments and services

– electricity, gas, drinking water and other utilities

Plans and actions should be established and prepared early before events occur that can cause issues and problems.

‘Be prepared, be proficient in ‘Risk Management’, be ready and able to respond to any event or situation at any time. This is essential for all businesses and services.

Contingencies need to be in place early and ready for all possible events and situations.

It is important that staff and employees are versatile to be able to deal with all situations.

‘Risk Management and ‘Be Prepared’, should be a major topic and review in business and department, quarterly and annual meetings.

All employees, staff, management and management must participate.

There must be action plans and capabilities in place before problems arise to allow businesses and important departments to react quickly to any situation.

Today’s supply chain problems and shortages show that governments, utilities, businesses of all types and business leaders have not been proficient in the business fundamentals of “risk management” and the preparation”.

People and citizens of countries are now fighting against this and are now paying higher prices for products and services which is a heavy personal burden for most.

The resulting stress on people creates many social problems, social unrest, and mental/behavioural health problems, as well as increased crime and law enforcement problems.

The solutions to the lack of “Be Prepared” and “Business Risk Management” can be several things.

-Teach this at the secondary level

-Make sure all colleges and universities have it in their curriculum as mandatory

-All public media must educate and promote this topic and the need for this for all businesses

-Banks and financial institutions must require “business risk management” and “be prepared” as a prerequisite for obtaining loans and finance

-Commercial insurance of all types should require the same

-Boards of directors should demand the same

-The shareholders of the company must demand the same

-To be listed on the stock exchange and to trade, it must be mandatory

– Need to be a requirement to obtain a business license or permit

– Need to be a requirement for doing government business or obtaining government grants or assistance

These things are necessary because so many businesses, business leaders, government leaders and public servants have proven themselves lacking in knowledge, skills and capacity in this area of ​​”preparing” and “managing risk” which is so important.

Written by Michael Marshall.

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