A small business comes with big decisions. From the name to the services, everything is important when you are just getting started. Small businesses grow due to the enthusiasm and motivation of the owners. As you succeed, you become vulnerable to different types of attacks.
You have to consider ways to protect your business from start to finish. This includes everything from reputation attacks to hazardous break-ins. There are a number of ways to prepare and remain vigilant of potential threats.
Protect Physical Assets
If you have a brick-and-mortar business location, you should implement extra precautions to protect physical assets. This goes beyond ensuring you have sturdy locks. You should also have a security system, including alarms and cameras. Commercial security cameras provide peace of mind as they monitor the premises even when you are away.
These can be both inside and outside the business. In the event of a break-in, cameras can provide critical information about the events. Here is where we purchased the best commercial security cameras today. Other ways to protect physical assets include warranty and insurance.
Protect Against Technology Attacks
If you have an online presence, you need to exercise caution there as well. Cyber-crime is on the rise and is a real threat to any business – large or small. Hackers can target small businesses expecting less computer security. Stay ahead of the game by investing in cybersecurity now. Protection involves installing firewall in your network and using antivirus software. You should protect intellectual property and data as well. Never store passwords in cloud-based software or through e-mail.
If you are questioning your cybersecurity, hire an IT expert. They can do a one-time risk assessment to pinpoint areas of improvement. This can help prevent a hackers from reach your financial information or that of your client base. There are also legal steps to technological protection. You can register your intellectual property with the U.S. Patent and Trademark office. This keeps the property in your hands.
Prepare for Financial Threats
One of the top concerns of any business is the money side of things. After all, the business will not run without enough profit. Financial threats come in many forms, including potential lawsuits and other scenarios. You can protect against lawsuits by exercising caution in business dealings. Avoid questionable business practices and unsavory business partners. Poor choices now can drag your business down later. Conflicts of interest can be costly choices too.
Insurance comes into play for financial reasons too. Insurance provides liability coverage and other protections. If an employee is injured on the job, worker’s compensation can cover their expenses. If your business is robbed, liability and property insurance can help you replace that valuable equipment or product.
Prepare for the Unforeseen
Yes, this one can seem a little hard to handle. After all, how can you prepare for what you do not know is going to happen? The answer is through a crisis plan. What would you do if there were a natural disaster? What if something catches fire during the business day? Do you employees know how to react and evacuate everyone safely? How would you handle a technology breach? These are all things that can be prepared for with a crisis plan. It might seem like a lot of work now, but it can pay off later.
Protect your Reputation
Lastly, a business succeeds with positive feedback from customers. This is why your reputation is important when first starting out. Be wary of social media. Once it is posted, there is no taking it back. Use social media as a tool and recognize unhappy customers will voice their issues here. Online conversations should be used to find ways to improve customer relations and business practices.
It should not be the place to overreact and disagree in a negative way. Avoid deleting negative feedback, as hard as that might seem. You should always be transparent, even if that involves giving space to unhappy customers on your platforms. Eventually you will build that trusting and supportive customer base who know to look past the upset outlier.