Risk Taking – 3 Thought-Provoking Questions

Risk Taking – 3 Thought-Provoking Questions

As a colleague of Nan’s, I frequently post here when things grab my attention about today’s workplace and sometimes, life.  A few weeks ago, I escaped the last of this cold winter and visited some family in Florida. While there, I found myself in the pool and happened to overhear a conversation between two older gentlemen about one of their sons. The son recently resigned from a very good job. His father said, “I don’t what being ‘happy’ has to do with his job. You and I worked our entire lives for our family; put a roof over our families’ heads and food on the table. We never thought of being ‘happy’ at work mattered.”

I had mixed emotions: sadness for the two men that being happy at work was something they didn’t even consider (I know times were different, this isn’t a criticism); concern for the son, who is unemployed and admiration too; he took a thoughtful risk to bring more happiness into his work life.

Mountain Biker Jumping Cliff



John Burroughs, American naturalist and essayist says, “Leap, and the net will appear. “ This is one of those messages, easy to say, challenging to do. How do you know when to take a risk and LEAP and when is the best decision to stay right where you are?

There are many considerations.  I’m going to focus on a single aspect – Does it matter?

So, you are at work and your boss asks you to come to their office, you sit down and he says – “Can you give me feedback on how that team meeting just went?” And, you know it didn’t go well and he is counting on you to give your honest opinion. What do you say?

Does It Matter?

Here are 3 questions to think about?

  1. At the end of the day, week or month will what you say matter? To you? To your boss?
  2. Can you look yourself in the mirror, knowing you did your best if you don’t say what you feel needs to be said? Or, if you do say it?
  3. What would you want if the situation were reversed? Or, if you were advising a colleague?

Similar to Burroughs message these are simple to ask, pretty tough to answer. Take your time to think and reflect before making a decision.

Then if you decide to take the risk, you will know your LEAP matters.