Risk vs. Success

risk vs. successAs an entrepreneur you expect to fail every once in a while, but what about risk?  New, brilliant and unique products/services/strategies don’t get tried any other way.  In some cases, avoidance of risk can lead to a total business failure.  So what is the right amount of risk?

Some business owners play it safe by watching others succeed and follow their lead with a few creative differences; this can lead to some success without the risk.  But did you really start a business to be a follower, to be left in the dust, or shown up by your competitor? I have learned that this strategy of succeeding in others footsteps robs you and your company from the invisible lessons (and accompanying knowledge and experience) gleaned from taking risks. You won’t share in the glory, praise, or energy derived from the success.  Taking risk is a good thing, if you do it with your eyes wide open.

Being able to discern acceptable risk vs. crazy or time wasting risk is the key.  You don’t have to follow in anyone’s footsteps to learn from them; such lessons can give you a starting place and a better idea about your risk direction.  Such lessons, help from others (like business coaches), and gathering information (consider getting your clients involved) about what the risk really entails should be your first step in creating that new product, inventing or evolving your services, getting more social with your clients/customers, or starting out on your own.  The truth is, when you make the final launch… there will still be risk involved.

If that sort of thought scares you, try approaching risk as what it really is… an opportunity.  This mindset not only gives us something other than fear and failure to focus on, but it reminds us of the ultimate goal and timeline we set which can tell us if or when to abandon the project.  Successful business owners know that the risk in trying and failing should never be an excuse for failing to try.  Think also why you started a business in the first place.  Was it to keep more of your hard earned money?  Was it to give to others something no one else could? Was it to feel that exhilaration when you reached that millionth customer or other goal?!

Keeping your goals in mind along with the research you did BEFORE the launch will be your best chance to know the right kind of risk for your endeavor.

Sometimes decisions that involve risk can paralyze us. If you’re wrestling with such a situation check out the Decision-Making Breakthrough.  It may be just what’s needed.