Emergency Management – The Best Defense is a Good Offense

Emergency Management - Mitigation, Preparedness, Response, and Recovery

Emergency Management – Mitigation, Preparedness, Response, and Recovery

What is Emergency Management? Generally, the term refers to preparatory steps taken by a person or group to marginalize the impact an emergency or disaster, natural or man-made, presents. Its practice applies to all regions of the country and includes an individual’s home, work, and life’s activities. Specifically, emergency management addresses Mitigation, Preparedness, Response, and Recovery. “The significance of the emergency management cycle is that all communities are in at least one phase of emergency management at any time.”1 Emergency preparedness is a component of emergency management.

Emergency Preparedness Training – Putting into Practice an Emergency Management Plan

Without emergency preparedness training and periodic review, the best response plan is worthless. Many of us have heard the saying “The Best Defense is a Good Offense”. 2 Jack Dempsey, the heavyweight boxing champion from 1919 to 1926, lived by it as did the great football coach Vince Lombardi, and President George Washington. It is easy to understand how this saying applies to sports and military operations, but how does it apply to Emergency Preparedness?

The concept in sports and military terms is to take the battle to the opponent. The objective is forcing an adversary to concentrate on reaction and response rather than planning and advancing. In essence, proactive planning and preparation (a strong offense) instead of a passive attitude (reacting) leads to a strategic advantage. As Benjamin Franklin said, “by failing to plan, you are planning to fail.” 3

Planning and Preparation is Key to Controlling an Outcome

In one bout, Jack Dempsey delivered a left hook that decimated his opponent. Some might say his power was the key to his success, but they are mistaken. Rather, it was the methodical, systematic analysis of his opponent and preparations based on that analysis. He planned his attacks based on careful observation and in-depth analysis of his competitor, and the results speak for themselves. The keys to preparation: a. study the opponent (strengths, weaknesses, characteristics), b. systematically analyze gathered information, and c. develop plans that address concerns while maximizing the potential for positive results.

Common Scenario – Preparing for Severe Seasonal Weather

Now that we are in winter’s clutch with the tornado and hurricane seasons approaching, one may ask “how do I create my emergency management plan?” Follow these steps. 1. Analyze your opponent. (What are the weather conditions and associated issues related to those conditions?) 2. Given that knowledge, evaluate the potential effects the opponent will have on your situation and location: power outages, extreme temperatures, flooding, inability to get out for resupply. 3. Visit websites that provide information on emergency planning, creating and emergency preparedness kit, and obtaining emergency gear to keep at home such as: shake or solar flashlights and emergency lighting.

EcoCentricNow LLC (ECN) Emergency Supplies

EcoCentricNow LLC (ECN) provides emergency preparedness flashlights, headlamps, lanterns, and emergency signaling equipment. Together with a wide battery selection and building emergency lighting, including exit signage and battery backup flood lights, our safety supplies keep individuals, families, and co-workers safe. ECN offers sales programs to accommodate individuals, organizations, and distributors. Contact ECN for purchasing details.


  1. https://www.scribd.com/document/532031099/Is111-Unit-4
  2. https://www.intellinet.com/intelliblog/the-best-defense-is-a-good-offense
  3. https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/460142-if-you-fail-to-plan-you-are-planning-to-fail

About the Author

Mr. James Christy is a distinguished and expert safety professional (retired) with decades of experience practicing and leading teams in the arenas of Environmental Health and Safety (ESH), security, quality control, training, and academia. His accomplishments include U.S. Marine Corp veteran, ambulance medic, American Society of Safety Professionals (Engineers) member, OSHA VPP auditor, NASA Safety Officer, Associate Safety Professional (ASP), Certified Safety Professional (CSP) and college instructor. Jim’s commitment to service continues with mentoring next generation safety professionals and sharing his wealth of knowledge as a contributing author.

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