Being in charge of a small business, or working for yourself, carries a burden of responsibility employed workers don’t have. If you call in sick to work, it might be inconvenient for your boss or your co-workers, but the business carries on as normal. However, if you are the boss, everything relies on your input and decision-making, so sick days can cause major problems with business operations.

If you can’t work, you may well suffer a cut in income, especially if you are a sole trader or work freelance. Many of the benefits available to employees such as health insurance and sickness cover may be limited or unobtainable if you’re self-employed, so unless you have a contingency fund, you could be facing financial difficulties.

If you’re part of a supply chain, you could potentially affect the future of your business if you’re unable to deliver to clients and customers, so being too unwell to work is a major problem for entrepreneurs. If you should be affected by health problems, there are ways to manage the situation to avoid some of the more serious consequences.

How to Cope with Health Problems When You’re a Small Business Owner

Take care of yourself

First and foremost, you need to look after your health. For one thing, a healthy lifestyle helps prevent many illnesses, and for another, if you are unwell, you need to rest and recuperate. If you push yourself too hard when you’re under the weather, you could well make yourself seriously ill, and rather than spending a couple of days in bed sweating out the flu; you could end up spending a week in the hospital with pneumonia.

Keep people informed

Very few people are immune to health problems, and if you’re normally reliable and trustworthy, most of your clients will understand your situation should you be too ill to work. The key is to keep them informed because not knowing why you’ve failed to deliver that causes the most problems. The earlier you can tell a client that you aren’t able to fulfil an order or meet a deadline, the better, as it gives them time to adjust their expectations or make alternative arrangements.

Get some help

If you have staff, make sure they have the skills to take over running the business if necessary. Even if it’s just to keep things ticking over, it takes a load off your mind and gives you a chance to recuperate. If you work alone, do you have anyone you can turn to for assistance, like a friend or family member? If your situation is due to some form of medical negligence, then don’t be afraid to seek compensation through The Medical Negligence Experts. If you’re entitled to compensation, that could offset the financial implications of being unable to work, making up some of the income shortfalls.

By far the best way of avoiding the impact of ill-health on your business is to stay fit and healthy. If you do get struck down by illness, look after yourself so you can return as quickly as possible, and make sure you’re prepared for such an eventuality so the business can function in your absence.

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