How a Small-Business Checklist is Good for Your HealthBy Nina Kaufman, Esq.
Last year, I went in for my annual checkup, and did not like what the numbers were telling me. Cholesterol was up. Blood pressure was up. And–horror of horrors–my weight was up (again). I was close to turning my medicine cabinet into a functioning pharmacy, with a full color palette of pills, capsules and tablets. If I didn’t make changes soon, my health could seriously be at risk–which would mean ever-increasing medical costs.
You only have to hit me in the head with a brick a dozen or so times before I actually get the lesson. So this past year, I turned the corner: drastically reducing my consumption of fried foods and cheese (oh, how I miss French fries!), exercising regularly and vigorously, and dropping 15 pounds (and counting). This year, my numbers were great. I averted a crisis and put healthier habits in place.
So why not do the same for your business?
Year after year, it’s tempting to avoid the (juris) doctor. After all, who likes being told that your business partnership is on a legally shaky foundation, your client contracts have holes like Swiss cheese, and your website terms are so thin, they’re like going out in winter without a coat? (No one–I get it.)
But business law is a situation where “what you don’t know can hurt you.” In our litigious society, why leave these issues to chance? An unseen loophole or ambiguous language is all a savvy attorney needs to turn a sniffle (a technicality) into walking pneumonia (litigation). If business isn’t booming, your company could be just one step from a visit to the emergency room (bankruptcy).
No need for this to be guesswork–I have listed some of the top legal areas where small businesses are often vulnerable. You can start the diagnostic process yourself with my legal audit checklist, ““Is Your Business Legally Healthy?” Once you’re through, you’ll know (as I did) where you may need to incorporate healthier (legal) habits into your business, so that you’re in good shape by year-end.