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Identifying Potential Threats to Business Success

Threats to a business are circumstances that could prevent or limit the ability to achieve desired objectives. Recognizing potential threats before they become problems will allow their impact to be mitigated or at the very least minimized. Threats can originate from a number of sources with the most likely being competitors. Constrained financial resources can inhibit a company’s ability to confront challenges as they arise. Also environmental as well as other circumstances can result in threats to business success. The key to identifying potential threats is to honest and realistic while being careful to assess the potential magnitude of the problems they could present. It’s important not to over-react or under-react. Following are guidelines to identifying threats to business success:

  1. Consider Advances Made by Competitors – The competition will make changes in order to succeed and those advances in their service offerings may pose a threat to ongoing business. New service offerings, pricing, etc. may cut into your market share. Knowledge of competitors’ activities can be instrumental in identifying threats before they become problems.
  2. Evaluate your Financial Circumstances – Are there sufficient resources available to withstand upcoming challenges. Strained financial resources can make it difficult or even impossible to deal with challenges when they arise.
  3. Note any Potentially Problematic Environmental Changes – Marketplaces are not static in nature – they are fluid and change over time. Governmental regulations, changing demographics and other factors can impact sales and business growth negatively if not recognized and dealt with.
  4. Identify Potential Obstacles to Achieving Objectives – Generally threats to business success can originate from any one of a number of sources. The purpose of identifying them is to pay attention to them and not dismiss them until after they become a problem.

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