Image by Linus Schütz from Pixabay


As a business owner, you don’t like to think about the frightening prospect of being robbed.

You could lose money and merchandise.

More importantly, you and your employees could be severely hurt or even killed.

So it’s strongly advisable to do an analysis of your store’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Then take the necessary precautions.

The minimal preparations:

1. Visibility of your store should be good from the outside.

Your windows should be sparkling clean, and your lighting must be good outside and inside.

There shouldn’t be any hiding places.

2. You should have an up-to-date camera and video-taping system.

This is helpful later if the unthinkable happens.

3. The cash register should be located so that it’s visible inside your store as well as from the front. Only keep the minimum amount of cash on hand for making change. Drop the cash frequently into your safe.

4. Make your bank deposits on an irregular basis – as much as possible, vary the times of your bank visits. It’s advisable for two people to make the deposits. Carry the deposit bag inside another container or bag.

5. Be discreet at shift changes – be sure to count the money in privacy – not in view of your customers.

6. An alarm is advisable – post the warning decals at the store’s entrance.

7. When customers visit, greet them immediately with good eye contact. In this way, potential robbers know you’re conscientious about paying attention. Another benefit: it boosts your customer-service image.

8. Designate an area out-of-sight from customers for your employees to store their personal possessions (and not under the counter near the cash register).

9. Train your employees so they can provide an accurate description of the perpetrators, if you are robbed.

10. Make certain that the rear store exit has visibility to the outside. In this way, you’ll minimize the prospect of robberies when you unlock the door to take out the trash.

11. Build a “safe” back room near the rear exit. Make sure it has a strong door that can be locked from the inside, and install a phone so you can dial 911, if necessary.

In case of a robbery:

1. Always cooperate with a robber. Don’t try to be a hero. Cash and store merchandise aren’t worth risking your life.

2. Don’t take chances – if the robber has a gun, remember that it’s likely loaded. Remain calm, speak softly but clearly. Make sure your hands stay visible so the robber doesn’t feel threatened.

3. Use a silent panic alarm only if you can do it discreetly and safely.

4. Focus on the robber so you can give an accurate description to give to law enforcement.

5. Get a description of the getaway vehicle – the make, model, color, license plate number – and the driver.

6. If you keep a weapon on the premises, it goes almost without warning – know how to use it, and only use it to protect lives.

7. As soon as it’s safe to do so, dial 911. Close your business until authorities arrive. If any customers are witnesses, politely ask them to wait for the authorities to answer questions.

8. Immediately write down all details.

9. Because it’s a crime scene, don’t rearrange anything or open your store for business until authorities say it’s OK.

Final thoughts: Your precautionary steps should include inviting your local police to your business to assess your security and to make recommendations. You should make the same invitation to your insurance company.

From the Coach’s Corner, here are other business precautions to consider:

Winter Security Tips for Your Transport Facility and Drivers — Criminals don’t hibernate like bears in the winter. Winter presents opportunities for criminals’ unscrupulous desires. To protect your products in the warehouse or distribution facilities and drivers on the road in snowy months, there are several important precautions to implement.

10 Unusual Prevention Tips to Effectively Fight Fraud — If you ever think you might be victimized by fraud, you probably are. Businesspeople are typically victimized by fraud in several ways. The causes will surprise you. Here are simple ways to prevent fraud.

Is Your Business Insured for Cyber Theft? No? Read this! — On a regular basis, cybercriminals are creating hardship for businesses and consumers. Here’s an unfortunate case study.

Strategies for Retailers to Prevent E-Commerce Fraud — Merchants are certainly aware of online fraud and 65 percent are trying to fight it, but their efforts aren’t working according to a study.

Protect Your Bank Accounts So You Can Sleep at Night — Imagine for a moment — you’re sitting at your desk enjoying a second cup of morning coffee. Then, your phone rings. It’s a call from your bank to discuss possible fraud. Your bank is concerned about possible suspicious activity with your accounts, and wants to make sure you’re not a victim.

Plagued by Chargebacks? 5 Ways to Fight Back — Increasingly, merchants are being victimized by chargebacks in illicit of behavior credit-cardholders. To avert being victimized by such fraud, here are five key steps.

“Anytime four New Yorkers get into a cab together without arguing, a bank robbery has just taken place.”
-Johnny Carson


Author Terry Corbell has written innumerable online business-enhancement articles, and is also a business-performance consultant and profit professional. Click here to see his management services. For a complimentary chat about your business situation or to schedule him as a speaker, consultant or author, please contact Terry.