The Strategic Business Blog

Two Silent Small Business Killers You Should Avoid

Posted by Terry McGill

2 silent small business killersMany times, small business owners develop attitudes over a long period of time that hurt them and their underlying businesses and they don’t ever realize it until it’s too late.

They are silent killers of the company and are not always easy to spot.

They will lull you into a false sense of security with your business and your employees and before you can act, they will strike the productivity, profitability, personnel and permeate the entire corporate structure.

The 2 Silent Small Business Killers Are:


Having spoken to thousands of small business owners, a large percentage of them are assuming far too many details about their businesses and their employees and their day to day operations.

  • They assume that their company is operating the best way possible.
  • They assume that everyone knows how they should be doing their jobs and are working as hard as they can to contribute the best results.
  • They assume that their operations are producing the maximum return for them.
  • They assume that everyone in the organization is as committed to their company as they are.
  • They assume that no one is taking advantage of them or the companies they own.
  • They assume that they have great communication skills and that everyone should be able to read their minds and know exactly what they are thinking.

There are just too many assumptions by most small business owners and these assumptions can and will have an extremely detrimental effect on the underlying business.


This usually creeps up on companies that have been around for a while and have had some success in previous years, but for some reason, things have become more difficult in recent times. It certainly can affect newer companies as well, but not as often.

I think one of the worst scenarios is when an owner has become very complacent about his or her business. Complacency prevents change and prohibits results.

It’s a very easy attitude to adopt, especially when you have had success doing whatever you do. Owners convince themselves that the results they are getting are due to the marketplace or the business environment and accept that as the reason for their lack of premium results. They are complacent and show very little concern until it’s too late.

With any success, it can be very easy to develop an attitude of superiority. The superiority can lead to complacency and the complacency can lead to less than premium results for their companies.

Take a few minutes and ask yourself if you have allowed either of these killers or both of them into your attitudes and thought processes. Your small businesses are not static creatures. They are fluid situations that are constantly changing and evolving as the markets and economies develop and change. The great thing about small companies is the fact that you can effect change and direction very quickly once you decide you want to. Don’t be afraid to assess your situations and make the changes necessary to produce better results for you and your companies.


Guide: Eliminate Over 80% of All Management Problems



Terry McGill is a small business consultant and managing partner of Strategic Business Directs.

Topics: Small Business, Small Business Killers