Keeping a business running isn’t just making sure that you budget your finances well and hire the right people. It also involves identifying the most common things that are most likely to derail your business off your ten-year plan. While these things can vary from industry to industry, the fact is that threats to your business exist and a good business owner can anticipate and plan for them.
This “worse comes to worst” situation is what business continuity management is all about—detecting possible threats and being prepared for scenarios where the business is at risk.
Threats can be classified into two types: internal and external. These can range from corporate espionage to a failure of your own internal security protocols, and can often have grave repercussions for your company.
Internal threats: poor security, employee dissatisfaction, process management
Internal security threats are factors that often fall within the company’s control, and are easier to identify and mitigate if the occasion calls for it. Internal threats can also be dealt with relatively quickly and quietly and can be used as further opportunities to improve your company’s security protocols.
Why do internal threats happen in the first place? There are plenty of reasons, but the most common is poor management on behalf of the company when it comes to a key role or system. That is why hiring consultants to overlook your business operations and processes from time to time or doing an audit of key roles and systems is so important.
External threats: natural disasters, data breaches, corporate espionage
On the other hand, external threats are less common than internal security breaches but are far more dangerous. Since these occasions can often fall outside of the company’s control, external threats can only be prepared for, but not completely mitigated.
As to why these even happen, sometimes, it really just boils down to bad luck. Particularly in the case of natural disasters, some things are really beyond a company’s control. Other factors, such as data breaches by hostile entities or competitors, can be dealt with, but these security measures will not always hold.
Constant vigilance: always being prepared
The best way to prevent both of these situations is to have a keen awareness and expectation and prepare for these situations accordingly. While it may be completely impossible to defend a company from all the risks that it faces on a daily basis, there are ways to mitigate and prevent too much damage from being done.
While preventing the threats from affecting your business is the best way, we can’t really control some things. The existence of these threats to your business should give you the urgency to be ready for them. Involve your team in the preparation process. Teach them how to spot any malicious or potentially dangerous scenarios that may affect your business operations.
Put in place a variety of security protocols to prevent any problem from getting worse. There should be a plan that details the actions you can take when problems occur.