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In a recent article for The Playbook published in the Portland Business Journal, reporter Andy Medici provides some advice for small businesses who might be concerned about the current state of banking. Although institutions such as Silicon Valley Bank being taken over recently has been in the news and certainly a cause for some concern, business owners can take advantage of this moment to strengthen both their understanding and closeness of their banking relationship.

The Federal government provides a level of security by insuring deposits up to a certain amount. This program can apply to individuals as well as businesses. These guarantees typically apply to all accounts at a single bank, meaning those who have deposits above the insured level should consider having deposits at more than one banking institution. Business owners can take action to diversify their deposits by using more than one financial institution.

Every business owner should make sure they know the level to which their deposits are insured. Your bank may also be able to provide strategies to make sure your deposits – even those above the total insured amount – can still be protected.

Businesses should also make sure they have a good relationship with their banker, including being sure you know the bank you deal with. Some regional banks have been in the news – a little on-line research should give you a firm grasp of how yours is doing. Businesses are also encouraged to have a “cash forecast and funding plan” that covers both short- and longer-term time-frames.

While there’s no official “take your banker to lunch day” on the calendar, this might be a good time to do just that. A close relationship can help you make sure you’re prepared during turbulent times.