Risky and business are often said together as if they were two sides of the same coin. At some level, all business is risky. You cannot accomplish anything worthwhile without taking a few risks. Marriage is a risk because you might lose your shirt (and end up with a broken heart for good measure). But for many people, it is still worth doing. University is a risk because you might get stuck with a student loan you can’t pay off and a degree that doesn’t land you your dream job. Even so, you would be foolish to avoid going for fear of failure.
Starting your own business is also risky. Depending on how big you decide to go, you might have to take out a second mortgage and risk your home, your good credit, and your ability to provide for your family in the future. That is a lot of risk to take on, especially considering the percentage of businesses that fail in the first five years. For the record, you should not risk your home for your business. Your family means more than the success of your passion project. There will be other business opportunities. You should know when to retreat and live to fight another day. That is just one risk that is ill-advised. Here are a few others.
Passing Up Good Opportunities
There is such a thing as opportunity cost. When you pass up good opportunities to enhance your business, that can be just as bad as leaping at bad opportunities. Knowing the difference is often what separates failure from success. One of the great new opportunities is the addition of smart lockers to your retail outlet. These are just a few of the benefits:
You gain a business relationship with the people in your community.
You make the community safer by providing secure package pickup.
You add a useful service to your businesses with little investment in time or money on your part.
Furthermore, customers benefit by:
Not having to worry about porch piracy.
Not having to worry about missing an important delivery.
Having a nearby place to send packages.
There are some opportunities that are too good to be true. They almost always are. And there are other deals that are too good to pass up. Many businesses that fail did so because they passed up opportunities that could have helped them succeed. Don’t let fear stop you from taking advantage of good opportunities that come your way. Saying “no” could be even more of a risk than saying “yes.”
Failing to Have a Backup Strategy
Do you know why cybersecurity crimes such as ransomware attacks keep happening? It is because they work so well. They work because people keep making the mistake of thinking it couldn’t happen to them. They think it couldn’t happen because they are such small and insignificant targets. The reasoning is very bad, and it gets worse the more you explore it.
Your biggest risk is the failure to have a prevention plan for cybersecurity attacks. Ransomware is a pretty easy attack to execute. It is also pretty easy to thwart. What you need is a good backup of everything that matters so that no one can hold your valuable data hostage. It should be a daily backup of a system that is only attached to the computer long enough to perform the backup. You should also have a cloud backup solution for everything in case your backup gets corrupted. In the security industry, it is said that two backups are really one. And one backup is really none. Failure to have a good backup strategy is a risk you should never take.
Never Invest Without Good Research
This one is one of the most obvious and also one of the most ignored rules of investing there is. People who invest on the basis of hot tips lose everything very fast. Another way this happens is through emotional investing. You really like a company for personal reasons so you invest heavily in their stock. This is a recipe for failure. If you don’t have time to do the proper research before the investment window closes, let it close and do better the next time.
Your business is always balanced on the knife’s edge of success and failure. Avoid failure by taking advantage of good opportunities, engaging a good backup solution, and investing only in well-researched financial products. Failure to do any of these things is a risk you can’t afford to take.