Common Traits of Embezzlers – Keep Your Small Business Safe

Embezzlers also known as swindlers, frauds, thieves, pilfers, fraudsters, cheats, etc are everywhere these days. You will find them in both in homes, small and big businesses, religious and non-governmental and organizations.

Embezzlers will kill your business if you allow them. As a security professional, I discovered that many organizations see security as an after-thought. At other times, business owners only remember security after they are attacked. These reactive approaches to security are inimical to the security and safety of an organization as a whole and its finances.

The best approach to a holistic security and safety of an organization – its infrastructure, people and finances – is to design, deploy and operate a security process. Security process would ensure that organizations and persons who are likely to be targets of criminality are able to anticipate, detect and prevent security problems such as theft, pilferage, invasions, armed robbery and terrorist attacks before they happen or be able to design and quickly deploy mitigating measures to reduce the impact of such attacks on the human, material and financial assets of the company.

In line with the need to do the security process, here are some common traits of embezzlers which a small and medium enterprise or any other business concern and even individuals can watch out for in their employees to enable them detect and remove such employees before they could do harm on the resources of the business.

They are at work before everyone, and the last one to leave at the end of the day. Regardless of whatever posturing of commitment to duties these kinds of persons would exhibit, their main intention is to ensure that no one is able to get to know their antics and secret and illegal activities. If they left office last the previous day and are able to be at work first thing the next day, they are able to control the environment and ensure that no information is able to get out to a third party which may lead to their exposure.

He or she will not relinquish their duties to others, giving the impression that they do not believe anyone can do them as well. The real truth is to mask their real intention which is to ensure that nobody got to know what they are doing.

This person will seldom take an annual leave from work. If they ever do it will be only a day or two. And while away, they are worrying and making frantic calls at the office. They are afraid something may crop and they get exposed or another person may find the link for stealing from the companies and join him.

He or she is usually the most computer savvy person in the company. Embezzlers make the effort to be skillful at anything that would give them total control to the means of stealing and covering their tracks.

They will be the most trusting person in the company. They make great efforts to behave as if they are totally obedient and trusts everything their superiors and even those who are beneath them in authority. They do this to disarm those who should have paid attention to their antics. The intention to have others perceived as if innocent and incapable of the evil they are doing or about to do.

Cunningly works to be a part of the extended family of the business owner by ingratiating himself to business owner’s family. They want everyone around to see them as being totally loyal and committed to the business and to the business owner. This is also a calculated attempt to remove any thought of their being capable of evil. They would go out of their way to serve the family of the proprietor in other extraneous ways that are uncalled for. They would help the children of the proprietor with their homework and even the wife or husband of the proprietor would receive special unsolicited services such an employee.

Highly clever and will have a lot of common sense. They usually have a lot of good ideas and go out of their way to provide services outside their role. This is calculated to ingratiate them to others, especially to remove suspicion from them.

Turns out to be the most organized person in the company. They have power to see that everything is in order. They take the extra effort to ensure that no one else would be called upon to do things, especially those through which money or other materials could easily be stolen.

Work overtime without compensation. This is calculated to make the business owner to be dependent on him or her and to also create doubt in the minds of the business owner if suspicions should arise.

Habit of taking more and more responsibility than other employees without question. They do these not because they love the company or its owner. They are merely ensuring they have more opportunities to steal or cover their tracks.

He or she never delegates any task to a subordinate. They are simply blocking others from coming upon their sources of stealing or getting to know what they are doing.

There are two major ways know when your staff has stolen much money from your business, namely:

He or she would show up in a luxury automobile unexpectedly. Because money cannot be hidden for too long if ever it could be hidden at all. As soon as an employee has started stealing money, he or she naturally starts looking for ways to enjoy the money. My theory on this is that the money starts speaking and commanding the man or woman to do their bidding.

Living beyond their means. An employee that is stealing money from his or her organization always starts living beyond his or her means. It runs from the same theory of money having its own commanding voice upon whoever touches it especially unworthily. You could notice the tell-tale signs of wearing expensive shoes, shirts/dresses, ties, suits, jewelry, etc. It is usually a matter of time before those who are stealing money from their companies manifest it through their outfit, carriage and demeanor.

It is important that entrepreneurs especially the small and medium enterprise business owners look out for these signs and anytime they notice, they pay close attention and take steps to either prevent the person from stealing from the company or catch them at the act and terminate such from their employment.

Save yourself and stop the embezzler before he or she steals you blind and make you lose your hard earned business.

Good luck.