I’ve got no problems flying on a plane.
Turbulence doesn’t bother me.

I’ve got no issues zip-lining 18 stories above the rainforest.
The speed is exhilarating to me.

I don’t have a fear of heights, I have a fear of the ground.
Specifically, a fear of hitting the ground really hard.

I don’t mind securely soaring through the air. The things that make my weebles wobble are the ones whose sole purpose is to fall towards the ground.

No bungee jumping for me, thank you.
Sky diving? Nope.
Rollercoasters? Nuh-uh.

Heck, I won’t even jump off a curb unless I have little risk of twisting my ankle.

I either need my feet firmly on the ground or nowhere near coming close to it.

calculated risks tightrope

The Entrepreneurial Risk

I’ve started three companies from simple visions, built them, and sold them each to publicly traded businesses.

People say I’m brave.
I disagree.

I saw an opportunity, created a product, and ensured people would buy it. Then, and only then, did I start a company to support it.

Essentially, I waited until the water was warm before jumping in and swimming. Hypothetically, of course. There was no actual water. And definitely no jumping. I don’t want to twist my ankle.

A Risk-Taker Not Taking Risks

People think I’m a risk-taker. They think it’s highly risky to start a new company.

In reality, entrepreneurs are some of the most risk-averse people I know. We aren’t gamblers. There’s too much to lose.

There’s a difference between risk-taking and savvy decision-making, otherwise known as calculated risks. For the uninitiated, it may be hard to tell the difference from afar.

Let me try to explain.

General risk-taking implies that there is high risk.

Risk-taking is like trying to take a selfie with a great white shark. It usually doesn’t end well.

calculated risks selfie shark

Risk-taking is betting your entire life savings on one number of the roulette wheel, knowing there’s only a 3% chance of winning.

On the other hand, there is savvy decision-making.

Savvy decision-makers assess their options and decide on the route with the best return for the least risk.

The more experienced you are as a leader, the better you get at doing this (hopefully).

Successful entrepreneurs are some of the most savvy decision-makers. They have to be. There’s too much on the line to ride aimlessly off the edge of High-Risk Mountain.

Keep in mind that everybody takes risks ev