When was the last time you took a risk, in any area of your life? To try a different food, take a different route to work, lend money to a friend? Are you naturally mistrustful, safe and err on the side of caution in your comfort zone or are you daring and a gambler, forever taking risks for them to often backfire?
All great entrepreneurs and CEOs, from Sir Alan Sugar and Bill Gates to Mark Zuckerberg and Arianna Huffington will tell you the journey to business success is made up of risky moves, extremely hard work and lucky steps. You may have to go against all your colleagues’ or friends’ advice who mockingly scoff your amazing new business idea or invest a lot of time and money into a new start-up or hire someone new to your team.
Business presents risks every day but what makes them scary is that the result of a risk is out of our control. Well, nearly.
As Neil Patel points out in his Business Risk Check List article for Forbes, there are certain steps and considerations you can take before executing a risk – to minimize the damage should it go south.
Knowing your boundaries and having a Plan B in case something goes wrong is always a good start. Failure can be a good thing as it can help us grow as we learn from mistakes. Remember a business that just plods along can’t grow if it doesn’t change and change is a risk.
Ask yourself: What’s the worst that could happen and am I OK and prepared to deal with this, should this worse scenario become a reality?
Would the risk of not taking the risk (inaction) be greater than taking the risk in the first place?
If the answers are ‘yes’, you’ve wanted to take the risk for a while and you’ve done your homework, you’re much more likely to take a careful risk. ‘Careful risk’ might sound like a paradox but they do exist- if you’ve considered all the possible outcomes!
Sometimes what can stop us taking risks isn’t necessarily fear- it’s lack of time, money and resources that hold us back.
Here a good idea might be to outsource the ‘donkey work’ of your business- the day-to-day admin and accounting that always needs doing and keeping on top of- so you have more time to get a strategy in place that you’ll follow to grow your business and take on new projects and clients.
This in itself is a risk. Placing elements of your business in the hands of third-party companies is always a gamble, so research the company you’re outsourcing to first to see if they’re reliable.
Though risks are a necessary ingredient in the recipe for business success, occasionally- in order to work smarter not harder– we need to turn down risks. We need to learn to say ‘no’. No to new clients, no to new projects, no to new services we offer.
Jordan Bates sums this up on RefineTheMind.com “Your objective should be to take on only those commitments that you know you have time for and that you truly care about.”
Sometimes an objective, yet experienced outsider, like a business coach can prevent you from being a Riskaphobe at the right time- they can help advise you on when it would benefit you to take a business risk, recommend when it’s best to say ‘no’, or just listen and brainstorm ideas for business growth with you. They can transform the way you work by helping you identify your goals and making a practical and pragmatic action-orientated plan that isn’t daunting, rather, it’s doable.
For more business advice or to ‘take the risk’ into investing in a business coach for yourself and your business, get in touch with us today or call us on 01484 401737 for a free 30-minute consultation!