Phil MeekinView Profile
Business is still tough at the moment for many organisations. If you are not in a role to see the finances of the company you work for, what are the signs you can look for that might suggest all is not ticking along nicely?
Although it would often be beneficial, many business owners are hesitant to discuss or share information with their staff.
A bit of advance knowledge could allow you to make an early decision, start looking at other opportunities out there, brush up your CV and address an exit plan before trouble arrives right at your door.
If you recognise some of these signs, you’re probably right to have concerns. Of course, there’s no way to really know what’s happening without hearing it straight from your line manager or boss, but these pointers could at least give you a head start in a change process for you.
Many people are thrown into financial turmoil if they are made redundant without warning. Most of us have commitments which suit our salary or wage level and a sudden drop in income can result in serious financial difficulty – sometimes even leading to bankruptcy. But anticipating redundancy can make a huge difference to your personal finances.
Worried? … Recognise any of these?
- Have the staff perks disappeared? Has your company suddenly stopped supplying free tea and coffee? Are you paying for your own Christmas party? Has there been a removing of incentive schemes? Cutbacks on staff expenses and benefits could be a sign that the company is starting to struggle.
- Are you doing more for no extra money? Especially in cases where other people have been laid off, are you being asked to take on other roles that weren’t part of your original job description without giving you more money for the extra work?
- Have high-level employees left? Big changes in management is a warning sign. They are often privy to financial information ahead of others and leave before the proverbial hits the fan.
- Are the bills piling up? Do you keep forwarding the same calls through to accounts payable? Unpaid or late bills suggest cash flow problems.
- Is there now a close monitoring of your efficiency? Do you now take note of the tasks you perform each day and ask about your role functions? Are they looking at who they can lose from a team.
- Have sales, orders and new contracts slowed down? Are calls into the office not as buoyant as before? Have new leads dried up?Are established clients still with you or have they switching to other companies? A drop or change around in clients may not necessarily be a big problem but a serious drop in performance indicates issues.
- Could you be the next to be laid off? If you’ve seen your co-workers go then there might be problems. You might be the next.
- Has your company recently been sold, or merged with a larger organisation? If so, then business assets generally become more important than employees and staff changes, relocations and redundancies are likely.
- Has the boss gone quiet? Have theupdates on performance or new initiatives and contracts ground to a halt? It could mean problems.
- Has a pay cut or unpaid leave been offered? Failing companies cut costs which can help prevent job losses or bankruptcy. Generally this is evidence your employer is not on steady financial ground. Take it if you have to, but prepare yourself to start looking for another position.