Small business ownership is not for the faint of heart, to be sure. Those with the entrepreneurial spirit that start off on their small business ownership are confronted with a number of hurdles right from the start. Throughout your journal as a small business, you will continually come up against various risks coming at you from different directions. To help you best prepare to confront these risks head on and, thus, protect yourself and the well-being of your business, let’s take a look at some of the most common risks small businesses can face.
Common Risks Small Businesses Can Face
Positioning your small business for continued, sustainable growth is important to its ongoing success. Bumps in the road can be seamlessly passed over or they can cause debilitating disruptions to business operations. Set your small business up so that it is fortified to survive the storms on the horizon and to continue to thrive thereafter. Small businesses face risks on a number of different fronts. For starters, there will be external risks.
External risks are risks that can largely be out of your control as a business owner. Natural disasters can disrupt your business as can facility damage. There will be customers that are slow to pay their bills and invoices. There will be lawsuits. Those risks that come at you from outside of your business can be numerous. To be as prepared as possible, make sure that you have proper insurance coverage. Have streamlined procedures in place to handle complaints that could turn into lawsuits. Have streamlined procedures for customers to pay their outstanding obligations to your business.
There will also be internal risks, mainly from your employees. Business growth is great, but it can also naturally lead to greater liability exposure. Take, for instance, the fact that a growing business is likely to need more staff. More staff leads to an increase in potential employee-related liability. The more employees you have, the more likely you are to have, at one point, a disgruntled employee who feels wronged, for whatever reason. This, in turn, can lead to costly lawsuits for your business. The solution? Put comprehensive and clearly stated guidelines in place so that your business standards are clear to everyone within your business and they are well aware of what the consequences of breaking rules and protocol are.
In this digital age, there will also be data risks that you, as a small business owner, will need to confront and prepare for. Cybercrime continues to be a prominent problem for all of us and business owners are far from immune from them. Take the steps you can to protect your company’s digital assets, including customer information. Even seemingly small steps such as regularly changing your passwords and using two-factor authentication for platform logins can help keep things secure.
There will also be risks to your company’s reputation. Reputation risks should not be underestimated. This is especially true considering a business’s reputation is one of the most valuable assets they have. Maintaining a positive reputation should be one of your main priorities as a business owner. There will be no faster way of seeing your business decline than if poor reviews and other hits to your business’s reputation start popping up. To help manage your business’s reputation, you should be actively managing your online reviews. Furthermore, make sure the effort is being made to respond to all customer feedback. This means responding to the good, the bad, and the ugly, in a timely and professional manner.
Business Law Attorneys
For assistance managing the risks your small business can and will face, reach out to the team at Jones, Gregg, Creehan & Gerace. Contact us today.