Running a business is no picnic. It’s an uphill battle that demands a lot of hard work and commitment. But to really get your business to grow and thrive, that hard work simply won’t be enough. It’s important to understand the need to take calculated risks for your business. I know that can be intimidating, so I have compiled a list of the best high-yielding risks small businesses can take directly from renowned business management experts.
1. Embrace Innovation. In many organizations, innovation is stymied by excessive loyalty to the old products and to the old way of doing things. Business management guru Peter Drucker said it best, “Most companies hang on to the business they have and are hugely reluctant to loosen their grip. This prevents them from innovating and determining their own destiny.” Let go of old and embrace the new!
2. Willingness to Fail Forward. Mistakes are a part of life and YOU MUST make them along the way to building a successful business. By making them early on, you can decrease the chance of making them again when they could cost a lot more! As self-made billionaire and author Jon M. Huntsman shares in his book Winners Never Cheat, “How one identifies and corrects errors — how one turns failure into a new opportunity— determines the quality and durability of leadership.” Taking risks is part of business.
3. Maintain Work/Life Balance. It’s important not to let your business consume your entire life. Make sure your business works on a frequency and schedule that works for you. By separating your professional and personal times, you will grow a healthy stamina to keep your company running. Warren Bennis former USC business professor and author advises in his book Why Leaders Can’t Lead, “Resolve to lead an integrated life, one that balances your career and personal roles harmoniously. Professional and private activities complement and enhance each other.”
Remember running a business isn’t always fun and you must always be willing to take risks and to adapt to change. We don’t always know how they will pay off, but more often than not it’s better to roll the dice and potentially move forward than it is to be complacent. Keep the above advice in mind as you grow and develop your business.
Co-written by Matthew Gilbert