Runaway truck ramps are one of those “hope I’ll never need to use one” necessities that minimize the risk of a catastrophe. Big rig drivers hope to never lose braking control on steep, continuous inclines, but it could happen. It’s a definite risk; and runaway truck ramps are the result of planning for it.
As a solopreneur, you probably won’t ever find yourself steering a 18-wheeler up a steep escape route to safety, but there will likely be times when your business meets risk head on and will need to be redirected. How can you prepare for that?
Before you can think about how you’ll get yourself out of a fix, you need to give some thought to the risks that you face in your business. New competition, losing an anchor client, a bad online review, vendors rate increases…all could have an impact on your business – and how you do business. Think about them – and write them down.
Build Your Runaway Truck Ramp
Next, think about both what you can do to prepare yourself to minimize the impact of the risks you’ve identified, AND determine what you’ll do after a risk becomes reality.
Risk: You lose an anchor client/lose recurring revenue.
Preparation: Consistently network face-to-face, build a strong LinkedIn network that includes professionals in your industry/target market. Make sure people know who you are and what you offer.
Action: Prospect to fill the void that the anchor client left. Reach out to contacts on LinkedIn and in the community to let them know you’re taking on new clients. Proactively ask for referrals.
Use this format to document a plan of action for each possible risk factor.
It doesn’t take a heap of time or energy. And because it takes what might have been “unforeseen circumstances” and makes them “foreseen”, you won’t have to hit the panic button when things don’t quite go according to plan in your business.
Your turn! How do you plan for and mitigate risk in your business? What risk factors pose the biggest threats to you?