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1 Icelandic Volcano, 1; Global Commerce, 0 

When the small volcanic island of Eyjafjallajokull in Iceland suddenly erupted, covering miles of Northern Europe in thick volcanic ash, thousands of flights suffered as a result.

People got stuck where they were for fays as flights were canceled across the continent, owing to the blinding, bleak cover of ash in the atmosphere. Many companies were severely affected by discontinuations of air traffic, and while some companies had the resources to hold virtual conferences with their employees and convene from where they were, many poorer organizations like perishable food vendors, floriculture and horticulturists were severely affected by the shutdown. Even BMW had to scale back and ultimately close the production line at Spartanburg, which depended on German factories to supply them essential components by air. Thousands of industries were left stranded and it resulted in loss of millions of valuable job hours and decreasing productivity.

Discuss Questions:

  • How can a company plan for an incident like this?
  • Determine the kind of goals that a large industry might have in this situation and compare them with poorer organizations.
  • What kind of plans are to be made, and why are they needed?
  • Discuss the lessons for managers arising from this disaster.