(This is a contributed post)
There are many risk factors to consider when running a business.
For starters, you need to consider your nearest business rivals, who are constantly waiting in the wings to steal your customers with their latest innovations and special offers.
Then there are the fluctuations in the marketplace which could hurt your business, such as changes in customer needs which could render part of your business irrelevant.
And there are many other risk factors to consider, many of which could scupper your business if you don’t find ways to manage them.
But then there’s you. As difficult as this can be to hear, you might be the biggest risk factor in your business. How? Well, consider the following in relation to yourself.
Do you have the ‘it won’t happen to me’ mentality?
If you work in a reasonably safe environment, you might have ignored the need for business liability insurance. If your business is small, you might have assumed your business is safe from cybercrime. And if you have been able to manage your budget, you might have neglected the need for an emergency fund. Why? Because you mistakenly assume a business disaster isn’t likely to affect you.
But here’s the thing. Injuries can happen in any working environment, even those that are office-based, so liability insurance is a must. Hackers attack the smallest of business because they are less likely to have protection, so you do need to safeguard your computer systems. And as a consequence of both of these things, you do need an emergency fund, as this might dig you out of the financial hole your business might end up in.
It won’t happen to you? Change your mindset because a business disaster could be right around the corner.
Are you making your employees unhappy?
You pay your employees a wage, so why should they be unhappy? Well, when was the last time you thanked them for a job well done? Do you often waste your employees’ time with pointless business meetings? Do your employees have a comfortable place to work? Are you forever making them do overtime? Do you give them jobs to do that are far removed from their job descriptions? And do you consider your employees as little more than worker drones, with no consideration for who they are as people? If you have answered ‘yes’ to any of these things, you might have a bunch of very unhappy people on your hands.
If your employees are unhappy, you can guarantee certain things will happen. For one, they might work less productively because their morale will be low. They might complain about you to friends and family and put a dent in your reputation. And they might quit your employ and look for work elsewhere. As a consequence of each of these things, your business is going to suffer.
So, be a good boss instead of a terrible one. Take time out to praise and reward your employees. Go easy on the meetings, and use other methods to communicate with them. Optimize your office to improve your employees’ comfort. Outsource more so they don’t have to work overtime or take on tasks that aren’t part of their remit. And treat them like human beings by taking a genuine interest in them as people. By taking these steps, you will do much to boost your employees’ sense of morale, and your business will prosper as a result.
Are you putting your business at risk?
If you have related to what we have discussed here, then yes, you actually are. So, follow our suggestions to make changes to your business, as you will then have the peace of mind in knowing that you aren’t the biggest problem in your business. You will then have more time to manage the other risks that pertain to your business and see success rather than face the risk of failure!