How to Reduce Your Risks When Starting a Business

| February 12, 2010 | 0 Comments

Risks are a constant in entrepreneurship. There are always risks in every step of starting and running a business. The key is anticipating these risks, and trying to find ways to reduce (if not totally eliminate) risks.

Take for example Cordia Harrington’s decision to buy a McDonald’s franchise and put it in a rural area in Illinois. The big risk for her is that the sparse foot traffic in the area will lead to the failure of her McDonald’s franchise to make any money. To eliminate the risk and improve foot traffic to her McDonald’s fastfood restaurant, she bought into a Greyhound franchise and made sure that the buses stopped across her McDonald’s store thereby ensuring a steady flow of customers.

Or consider the story of Suzanne Meyer, founder of the personal greeting company The Welcome Committee in North Carolina. The biggest risk she faced when she started the company was for her employer to enforce the non-compete agreement she signed preventing her from starting a similar business for twelve months. She sought a lawyer’s advice on the legality and enforceability of the non-compete agreement as the last thing she’d want is for her former employer to sue her. Thankfully, luck (and maybe loads of prayer) smiled on her and the former employer did not go after her.

Makeup artist Tayelor Kennedy’s failure to accurately document the work she did including the photographers she worked with put her career at risk early on. It limited her ability to win more jobs and get more clients because she was not able to provide references of her work.

When creating a new product, there is always the risk that your target market may not see the value of your product. Haralee Weintraub faced this big risk when she designed a sleepwear product for women suffering from hot flashes, including cancer survivors. Educating her target market was a critical first step to prove that the new technology used in the fabric of her products can indeed alleviate the discomfort and sweating brought about by hot flashes.

Every decision you make when starting or running a business has some risks involved. Watch the video to give you ideas on how you can lessen, if not totally eliminate your risks, when starting a business.

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Category: Success Tips, Briefs

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Isabel Isidro is the editor of She also writes for and Learning from Big Boys .

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