Sometimes, taking calculated risks is the only way to advance your career. There is an age old adage “No Risks, No Gains”. This holds true for career and professional life also. If you are looking for a better future and a great professional life, it is important that you learn to take risks as early as possible in your career.
There are some goals that have a pretty straightforward path towards them and achieving them is not a matter of faith but that of hard work and persistence. However, life doesn’t pan out as a movie script. It has its own bends and it likes to keep surprising us by throwing around challenges and opportunities without any warning. People who are ready and prepared to grab these opportunities are often the most talked about and successful amongst the lot.
There are countless examples of men and women taking a leap of faith to follow their instinct and winning the race by huge margins. There are many people those who took risk, either leaving their stable job to start their own company or work for a startup, or following their hobby fulltime. They are not only successful, but also satisfied and content, happier than the others. It really is not a very pleasant thought to do something that others might term as risky, or crazy, or even stupid. However, considering this, if we always start living in our own comfort zone, without ever stepping out of the familiar territory, we may not only be limiting our success but also our capabilities and careers.
This holds especially true for higher level positions such as Chief Logistics Officer, Chief Executive officer or Chief Financial Officer, amongst others. The higher you reach in corporate ladder, the greater is the responsibility, as you will be required to take important business decisions. Not every time you will have logic and data to support as some of your decisions will be pure risks, from a business point of perspective. In fact, in the current uncertain economic times, most of us are taking risks in one form or the other in our lives. Whether it is an investment that you are making, or studying a particular subject, the future always has some elements of uncertainty. If you are ambitious and do not want to settle for anything less than the top job in your field, then it is imperative to develop risk-taking acumen. Here are some tips for the same:
Learn to step out of your comfort zone in daily life
Whatever you do as a person in daily life has a direct correlation with your work. Thus, if you have an introvert personality type, you will also avoid direct communication with your colleagues, clients and bosses. Although it may not be a big deal for you as of now, this tendency to stay in the comfort zone is the biggest enemy of a progressive person. To learn to take risk you should start by stepping out of your comfort zone in daily life, whether it is striking conversations with strangers as an introvert, or putting extra hours at work instead of going early home daily.
We all grow habitual of protection, right from childhood to adolescence and this takes a heavy toll on our ability of taking risks. Our major life decisions are made by our parents, and we are lured into thinking that the life has a definite pattern, and the world is a quite easy place to live in for most time until you are faced with making critical decisions by yourself. Such times call for a prepared mindset which is comfortable with the idea of risks, and is ready to go out of the comfort zone to thrive and survive.
Improve your decision making abilities
While applying to high responsibility and visibility positions like CEO, CFO or Chief Logistics Officer, you will be judged hugely on your decision making capabilities. Professionals in these positions are often required to take critical decisions in the face of challenging situations, and there is no one to tell you right from wrong. It’s your own decision making abilities that will come to the rescue. Once you start stepping out of comfort zone, handle uncertainty in a better way, you will automatically learn to take complex decisions. A lot of analysis and logic will go into making the right choices, but once you start backing your instincts, it will certainly help you in taking calculated risks.
Commit mistakes, and learn from them
All the bets you make are obviously not going to result in your favor. Committing mistakes and learning from them should be followed by analysis and course correction which will lead to higher success rate in future in the decisions you take. Reflecting on your successes and failures is important not only to learn from mistakes but also to know what you did right so that you can repeat that pattern in future. Proper analysis might also let you know which risks were worth taking and which should be left alone. Whatever the case; commit mistakes, learn from them and avoid them in future undertakings.
Saurabh Tyagi is a blogger and a professional career author with proven expertise in writing for topics related to jobs, job trends, different job opportunities, various workplace and industry information, tips and strategies for job seekers.