Risk taking is an essential feature of entrepreneurship; it is difficult to have a booming business without taking risks. To take a risk in your line of business means going out of your comfort zone to try something different—though uncertain of its outcome—for the purpose of expanding your business. Prior to reading this article, motivational speakers have urged you to take risks, but you still need a little push. Or maybe you want to initiate a different style in the way you run your business, but for some reasons, you are still holding back. Either ways, here are five reasons you need to take some risks:
1. It increases self-confidence
To actualize a business plan in spite of the imminent risks surrounding that decision builds your self-confidence. Subsequently, it will take more than “a possibility of failure” or an obstacle to talk you out of your ideas. As an entrepreneur, self-confidence helps you perform to your potential, even when you are under pressure. It increases your ability to influence others, especially when you are pitching an idea, or selling a product.
2. It broadens your knowledge
The truth is some risks eventually result in massive losses. But rather than mop about your failure, learn from your mistakes. That way, you become aware of the do’s and don’ts in your line of business. There will always be something to learn from the outcome of the risks you take, but you cannot learn anything without doing anything. The pragmatic thing to do is to ask yourself why your plan didn’t work; what you can do better; what you need to get rid of, etc. In the event that the risk you took worked in your favour, it puts you in the position to advise other upcoming entrepreneur on steps to take.
3. It helps you evolve
In the words of Jeff Bezos, “What’s dangerous is not to evolve, not to invent, not to improve the customer experience.” Without risks, your business cannot evolve. Sometimes you need to try something other than the usual pattern. Repetition breeds boredom, stagnation, and subsequently, loss of clients, or fans. A different approach brings about innovation in your business; it creates more opportunities for you and more important, prevents you from lagging behind in your industry.
4. It quenches the “what if’s” curiosity
A lot of people avoid taking risks because of the fear of failure. They allow the “what if’s” strangle their brilliant ideas. Jeff Bezos’s advice is this: “If you do only the things you know are going to work, you’re going to leave a lot of opportunity on the table.” In other words, just do it. Your business might be doing a lot better if you try out that idea that has been bugging your mind for a while now. Be courageous; take that risk and have your answer to the question “what if.”
5. It enables you overcome the fear of failure.
You cannot achieve your dreams by playing safe; risks must be taken, and tough decisions must be made. Successful entrepreneurs are aware that they cannot always win. But the difference between risk takers and regular entrepreneurs is that the former see failure as a stepping stone to success. Failure doesn’t stop them from trying again. This mind-set is what distinguishes successful entrepreneurs from the others. The fear of failure dissipates the moment you start taking risks.
That said, I should state here that risk taking differs from making irrational decisions; don’t ruin your business.
Risk taking involves strategic planning, hard work, consultation, and wisdom. Take calculated risks that bring higher chances for reward. Some of the ways you can achieve this is to do a lot of research on the new area you want to embark on, set realistic goals, and think about the long term effects of your decision.
The ball is in your court.