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The Danger of Overthinking Risk in Business

by Fitima Miller, MBA

I really like this topic because I don’t see it discussed well in many places. Our instinct is to gather all the research, look at all the angles, and calculate all the risks. Being prepared and having a game plan is vital to success. There is also a danger in business, especially with new entrepreneurs, of overthinking risk and falling into the trap of calculated risks. I like this topic because in a way it is counterintuitive. We think the calculated risk is superior to the uncalculated risk, but this is where the real danger of overthinking lies.

This topic comes from the chapter “Taking Risks – How Far Are You Willing to Go?” from my book Entrepreneurship: The Path to Prosperity – 10 Secrets to Becoming a Successful Entrepreneur. This topic and other important ideas about risk are discussed there in more detail.

Thinking Ourselves Right Out of Success …

I have run a number of successful businesses from the beginning into million dollar ideas. I have also coached a wide range of beginning entrepreneurs all the way up to established people in business. I see this a lot. We want to control everything, so we begin to overthink. People will study and think and rethink and replan and redraft until they reach a point of stagnation. They have thought themselves out of acting on their idea. They talk themselves out of trying.

There is always risk with every idea and there is great risk with great ideas. You should research and plan, but you can calculate the risk to the point that you never risk at all – never try in the first place.

The Power in the Uncalculated Risk …

Every great achievement in business came from that uncalculated risk. It was the person that tried what hadn’t been done before and what no one thought could work. That person achieves greatness. Aside from the franchise where someone else has calculated out the risk model in advance, there is not much success to be found in calculated risks. Calculated risks limit us. You will only go as far as fear will allow. The uncalculated risk has the potential to remove the ceiling and allow you to go further than anyone before you. We research and we plan, but then we take the risk even when we don’t know how it will work out.

There is great power and potential in that.

To learn more about capitalizing on the uncalculated risk, check out Entrepreneurship: The Path to Prosperity – 10 Secrets to Becoming a Successful Entrepreneur. You can also contact me directly to discuss your business needs specifically.

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