Richard Carman 21/11/2016
Business Crisis Essentials
A massive 150+ UK organisations are hit with a business crisis every day. Incidents such as fire, ill health or failure of a crucial supplier. But what can you do to maintain cash flow and protect your reputation?
Most global corporates have a business continuity team who assess risks, model business impacts, write plans and conduct tests and audits.
As an SME, we know we should do more to protect our business from risk, but we have today to worry about and that tends to get our attention.
What’s usually the case, is given unlimited amounts of time, cash and customer tolerance, we get things wrong and keep trying until we find a solution.
However, with 80% of SMEs failing within 18 months of a disaster, there is undoubtedly room for improvement. What if the owner is the business crisis? Due to ill health, death, breakdown…
Your business funds your living costs, and will most likely become your pension. We know we face increasing risks, and at the same time our customers are becoming less likely to stick by us when we falter.
We also know our insurer’s cheque will help, but they won’t spend the night on the phone helping to recover our business. So for most of us it’s our responsibility to get back to business as usual.
Here are 3 easy steps you can take now to become more resilient and improve your chances of surviving and thriving after a crisis:
1. Identify your risks
Make a quick list of the key processes your business needs to trade. Identify what events could interrupt those processes and find ways to reduce the risk. For example, losing email = back-up email regularly.
2. Review your insurances
Are you over or under insured? What would happen to the business and its employees if you died? Are you covered for business interruption? Clarify and discuss the details with your insurance broker.
3. Know who to call
When a crisis occurs make sure you know who to call for help. Save the telephone number(s) to your phone, and print a couple of copies to leave at home and in the car just in case.
As a business owner, experiencing a crisis can be a desperately solitary ordeal and downright terrifying. Improving your resilience and survival after a crisis can be painless if you prepare for the unthinkable. Identify, monitor, respond.
More small businesses need to unite in the fight for survival. These tips could help prevent other businesses from crisis, please share.