Tourism Business Resilience WorkshopsOn February 26, 2018 and February 28, 2018 the Tourism Business Resilience Workshops took place in Virginia Beach and Williamsburg. The main goal of the workshops was to assist business owners and managers in assessing the level of resilience of their businesses to natural hazards, such as flooding and hurricanes, and to provide them with the tools to increase their resilience and business continuity. The workshops included presentations from Dr. Michelle Covi (Old Dominion University and Virginia Sea Grant), Dr. Lindsay Usher (Old Dominion University) and Dr. Wie Yusuf (Old Dominion University). In addition to the listed presenters, Jim and Annemarie Dickerson (owners of Francis Scott Key Resort) were the keynote speakers. The couple shared the lessons they learned after their business in St. Maarten experienced Hurricane Irma and their plans to apply those lessons at their resort in Ocean City, Maryland to increase their resilience.
Attendees participated in an interactive activity that gave them insight on just how resilient their businesses are during extreme weather events and how to take action to make their businesses more resilient. The activity introduced The Tourism Business Resilience Self-Assessment tool. This tool allows business owners and managers to evaluate the resilience of their business and it also provides them with links and resources to improve their planning, preparedness, continuity, communications and more. Those who were able to attend the event left the workshop more aware of what their business should do to become more resilient in the face of natural hazards/extreme weather events. Take a look at the slideshow that was presented during the workshop, feel free to take the self-assessment and please keep a lookout for more workshops in the future!