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Opportunity management involves
a process to identify business and community development opportunities that could be implemented to sustain or improve the local economy.
As such, there can be little doubt that with any opportunity for new business or business expansion or development of the community that presents itself, there exists some risk. However, ethical risk can be minimized, if not eliminated, by good decision making on the part of leaders who themselves are ethical.
Perhaps, then, the key factor in eliminating ethical risk lies within the business leaders themselves who plan the development as surely their perspectives and values effect the choice of which businesses they will bring into the community. For instance, in a community which has had rioting and looting destroy some of the local businesses, it will be difficult for community leaders and businessmen to replace those businesses that refuse to rebuild. Therefore, less ethical businesses may wish to come in, knowing the socio-economic demographics and foreseeing an opportunity to exploit members of the community such as a loan company that provides high-interest loans to people who are credit risks and cannot obtain loans from banks or other credit companies. City management must ascertain that such a business meets state and local regulations. In another instance, a pawn shop may also see business opportunities also in low-socio economic area. However, some unethical pawn shops deal with stolen goods; therefore, city and business leaders must be selective in allowing a pawn shop to open, researching and checking backgrounds of owners, etc. In conclusion, ethical risk can be minimized, if not eliminated, when sound ethics are embedded in the culture and practices of management.
An important element of risk management and opportunity management is evaluation of "opportunity cost" -- the cost of choosing one option over another. If you invest capital, for example, in upgrading the office or reception room, to give a better first impression to potential customers, you give up an opportunity to invest that capital in updating equipment or in advertising, etc. Every choice eliminates other choices, and that often abstract cost must be included in your business decision equations.
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