In the article, “Business Interruption: Are You Prepared For It?” small business expert Jim Blasingame spoke to the impact that businesses can have due to unexpected events can have on small businesses and asked, “‘Could your business handle the financial impact of a business interruption?’ Almost one-fifth said they, ‘have cash and business interruption insurance if we need it,’ and a little more than one-third reported they had ‘cash and credit if we need it.’ The other half admitted, ‘We would be hurting if it lasted more than a few days.’”
While interruptions in the form of natural disasters and other unpreventable circumstances are important to plan for, “disasters” aren’t the only kind of interruption a business can experience – in fact, these instances are only a small part of a much greater picture.
This Interruption Doesn’t Have a Formal Insurance Policy
The kind of interruption I’d like to discuss is anything that causes a break in continuity. It can be a good interruption, such as the birth of a new child, or a challenging one, as in the loss of a loved one. In business, interruptions are expected, even when they’re of an unexpected nature. There are the interruptions that occur when starting a new business in a foreign land, or the challenge of embracing new technology to stay ahead of the competition. These are the kinds of interruptions I address in Interrupted Entrepreneurship (or “IE”as I call it) – those moments or actions that cause a change in your business. It’s how those IEs are handled that is the key to businesses surviving throughout the generations.
Interruptions within a business are as much a part of life as breathing and blinking—they are viewed by some as hiccups, challenges, or even crises. They are, quite simply, a change, and one must be ready to accept and even embrace such changes as they come, to get creative with them, and use them as a catalyst for improvement. In essence, how we choose to deal with IE is one of the key qualities that defines our professional, as well as our personal, lives. From dealing with the business cycles of IEs in their many forms, to family transitions, in the end, businesses ultimately have one question in mind: are we going to engage with these interruptions as setbacks or as opportunities?
You May Not Experience an Earthquake, Fire, or Flood, But…
One thing is certain: no one is immune to interruptions, and family businesses are no different. Every family business has dealt with interruptions, from the expected changes and challenges of growth to the unexpected interruptions resulting from loss and poor decision-making, and everything in between.
How are you dealing with your interruptions? What kind of “coverage” do you have in place to successfully address them? Learn more about successfully managing IE by visiting www.ramezbaassiri.com.