A UK Business Owner’s Guide
So many of us started out as employees. It’s the usual path we all take after school and one that is expected of us and just “what you do”. I have spoken to so many business owners who agreed that leaving behind that employee mindset is really difficult. It is ingrained in us. There are pros and cons to most things. Although I firmly believe that being self-employed has an abundance of benefits, one huge plus of being an employee is that you are rarely personally liable or responsible for the companies problems.
Starting your business has probably opened your eyes to just the amount of elements involved. A lot of which we kinda just learn as we go, which is totally ok! Are you sensing a “but” coming? Here it is…
BUT, one thing that is too important to sit on is insurance. The thought of it likely fills you with dread. However, I promise you that a huge blunder would be to put off protecting yourself from unlikely but feasible scenarios. You just don’t know what might happen. This isn’t to scare you by any means. I just know the weight it will lift off you, to know you’re protected.
I’m going to run through the main types of insurance available and who needs them. Not all will apply to you now, but it will be good knowledge to know for the future.
Professional Indemnity Insurance
This type of insurance is going to make the most sense for VAs, coaches and service-based entrepreneurs. Professional Indemnity Insurance (PI) covers you for any mistakes or negligence you’ve caused to a client which they deemed has had a financial impact on their business. A client may look for their losses to be recouped which would be covered under PI. Larger companies may even request that you have Professional Indemnity Insurance before they start working with you.
*I currently use Policy Bee which specialises in small business and even has insurance specifically for VAs. If you mention my name or “Jemma Virtually Done” when purchasing, they’ll send you £20 in the post!
Public Liability Insurance
As the name suggests, Public Liability Insurance (PL) relates to claims made against you by the public (or third party). Accidents happen, there is no way around it. PL covers you should someone get injured or have harm caused to them as a direct result of your business. Imagine you’re at a business convention or have a product featuring at a market. Someone trips over a cable or even your handbag. Any injury caused will be your responsibility. Organisers of events and even some clients may insist that you have Public Liability Insurance, before working with you.
Business Content Insurance
Most of us started out with just a laptop! It’s truly amazing how far we can get with just one piece of equipment. We all know how important and valuable our laptops are to our small business. That is why it’s so important that it’s covered should anything happen such as theft, water damage or even if you leave it behind in a cafe (my heart sinks even thinking about it). Our laptops, phones and even cameras are our livelihoods. Make sure you have a comprehensive insurance policy on all your tech, just in case.
Income Protection Insurance
Has a previous sick day sent you into a panic? When we start off, taking a sick day just doesn’t even seem like an option. Have you ever thought about what might happen if, god forbid, anything serious was to happen if you were to suffer a long-term illness or injury? No one wants to think about these things. However, having the right insurance means that you don’t really have to. You’ll receive a portion of your monthly income throughout your hiatus.
Cyber Liability Insurance
There are more online businesses now than ever before. It is no surprise then that Cyber Liability Insurance has become a popular choice. Previously, companies would likely have their own internal secure database where files and sensitive information were stored, only to be viewed by those within the company. With more online B2B trade, exposure to hackers and compromises in data security is much higher. If you believe that the information shared between you and your clients is highly sensitive, you may consider looking into Cyber Liability Insurance.
The worst probably won’t happen. However, as a business owner, you need to be prepared for everything. You’ve put your heart and soul into it. The last thing you deserve is for the carpet to be pulled from under your feet.
All countries will have their own policies standards. I’d suggest doing some research and finding out your options.
There are so many things to think about as business owners. Some more exciting than insurance! If you’re looking for a community of likeminded women to bounce ideas off, don’t forget to join my Facebook Community