Many reasons prompt small businesses to overlook the risks of their transactions or the risk associated with regulatory compliance. In previous articles, I have written about the importance of compliance. Yet, again and again, I hear how small businesses get in trouble with the law for regulatory violations.
In everything we do, we take risks. As business owners we take greater risks, we become accustom to it. So we become comfortable taking risks so much so that sometimes we ignore it to our detriment. For instance, ignoring that we have to follow a set of regulations, ignoring there are consequences for violations of the regulations. We operate sometimes as if the rules don't apply to us, that they are written for other business owners. Others out there. Us?! No way. We actually rationalize our thought process with this excuse, "we are small, who has time to bother with us?! The government has bigger fish to fry."
Perhaps, we don't put it in the exact same words, but our negligence to ignore the legal risk our businesses face could hit us on the face one day. Suddenly. As it has many other businesses, thousands of other small businesses. It is only when it happens to us we awake somehow from a place of denial, that we learn of a potential storm or a potential tsunami that's about to happen to our business. This very business we have worked hard to build.
If this is you think what risks are you ignoring because you think will not happen to you. Think of the consequences of those risks. If you don't know the consequences do talk to someone who does. But doing nothing is not an answer, because doing nothing could cost your business thousands of dollars in penalties, some millions of dollars; it could lead also to closing your doors, or worse to lose your personal liberty. The chances you take are yours to make, but don't bet on chances that come from an uninformed place. Bet on the chances you want to take under informed decision making being aware and knowing the risks you take.