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Top 5 Emerging Risks in 2018

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Resolutions exploded when the ball dropped this New Year, but ours remained the same – an absolute commitment to make things simple for our clients. To achieve this, the Lacher team sat down at the annual New Year, New Risks meeting to identify the top 5 emerging risks in 2018.

We’ve highlighted the risks here, and we’re going to roll out more info on each risk as the first quarter progresses.

Check these out:

Reputational Damage
In 2018, business reputations are in danger! The court of public opinion is America’s top-dog, so any degree of reputational damage has a high chance to kill corporate standing and run a company broke. Equifax, anyone? 

Plus, protecting against reputational damage is the trickiest risk to prepare for because businesses are always exposed – even when they’re doing everything right.

To help evaluate and manage reputation we’ve developed two questions companies need to be asking themselves - Are we trustworthy? And, are we innovative enough? We’ll discuss these in our next installment.

Leveraging Technology
Leveraging technology breaks down to the classic battle between risk & reward.

A struggle between what are we gaining? vs. What are we exposing ourselves to?

It’s already been proven that technology can improve efficiency, cut costs, and increase customer engagement. But what happens when a fire wipes out a company’s servers and they didn’t have any data backed up? Or when a business conducts a social media campaign and they receive a string of negative reviews? Or when a newly installed technology platform doesn’t perform as expected?

Often, it’s the unexpected consequences that have the greatest impact on an organization – just like this fitness tracker that accidentally revealed the locations of secret US Army bases.

Data Privacy & Security
This is the stuff risk managers have nightmares about!

Even though 70% of all cyber-attacks target small businesses, 1/3 of small business owners have no form of cyber-security in place.

And with the business-world becoming more and more interdependent it’s crucial that business owners can guarantee that their partners and vendors make the cyber-security cut.

Target missed that memo. In 2013, hackers gained access to Target’s system by exploiting a third-party vendor. And last year, Target paid out $18.5 million for the breach.

Workforce
Talent shortages, managing generation gaps, and appeasing a diverse list of employee demands are the top workforce risks in 2018.

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Talent shortages aren’t stemming from a lack of education or skills, it’s just that most skilled workers are leaving work after a short span of time in search of better opportunity and higher pay. By leveraging innovative total rewards programs companies can create value for their employees outside of their pay structure.

Government Regulation & Politicized Modern Climate
In 2018, expect government regulation to be unpredictable. That’s alarming, considering that unpredictability is a massive risk. One thing is for certain though, regulation isn’t going anywhere.

Look, we get it – mentioning politics in a board-meeting can be like mixing oil and water. But that doesn’t excuse business owners from being engaged, especially when a policy change can make or break a business.


Now that we’ve established the risks businesses need to watch for in 2018, tune in for future installments for more detailed discussions of each risk.