Excelente artículo escrito por mi cuñado, Simon Allsop, desde Australia.
Simple Risk Analysis For Small Business
Managing risk is as important a part of managing a small business as managing sales – but it can be easy to put off because it looks like such a huge, boring, formal process! The key is to break it into more manageable parts.
Work through the following steps with your staff in short, 20 minutes meetings to keep the ideas flowing and the energy levels high. You’ll have a thorough risk management plan in just a few weeks.
Meeting 1: Identify your risk areas
Brainstorm the events that might cause a loss or disruption to your business and put a weighting beside each one that reflects the likelihood of something going wrong. The most common risk areas include:
The unexpected exit of a business owner
Fire, flood or theft
Damage to goodwill and reputation
The weighting can be a simple verbal descriptor ranging from “very likely” through “moderately likely”, “likely” and “unlikely” to “very unlikely”.
For example, the chance of something going wrong in IT is “very likely”. The loss of a major customer or supplier may be “moderately likely” and the chance of a media scandal may be “very unlikely”.
Meeting 2: Measure your risk
Set your risks in order of priority by placing an estimated dollar value on each one. For example, the loss of a major client may mean the loss of 65% of your income. Losing an employee or piece of equipment could cost you many thousands of dollars a week. Failing to consider all the risks when acquiring a new business can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars.
These are all worst case scenarios – but by understanding the risks you can better manage against them.
Meeting 3: Identify the appropriate risk management strategies
Look at your existing control processes and see how robust they are. If you find areas that are not being managed for risk at all, there are a range of different strategies you may need to put place.
You may need to have the right insurance and enough of it to see you through a disaster. You may need to re-shuffle the way you work, so that more than one person knows how to perform each task. Or you may need a business succession plan and a will for each business owners, and a plan to document all company processes. If you find yourself stuck, consider bringing in consulting advisers to help ensure all risks are covered.
Doing a thorough risk analysis is a critical step in working on, rather than in your business.