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The Affect of Risk Taking in Business

March 25, 2015

Business inspiration and advice for women entrepreneurs


Headlining the news this morning is Angelina Jolie’s decision to have a medical procedure that will considerably lessen her risk for ovarian cancer. Jolie candidly explained her personal decision in an op-ed a few days ago. A couple years ago she wrote a similar piece when she decided to have elective breast surgery.

Jolie has created, what the media and medical community is calling the “The Angelina Affect,” because of the increase in mammograms and elective surgeries since her first announcement. When a star as popular as Jolie shares her personal decisions, other women can be inspired to make similar health decisions for themselves.

The take-away for me when I thought about Angelina’s decision was not about her bravery to share such a personal story in a world that craves information on celebrities; but her decision to face risk head on which so many of us avoid. By taking her medical decisions into her own hands, she considerably lessened the risk of facing cancer one day and possibly missing a future with her children.

Women entrepreneurs are faced with risk all the time. We face it in our own personal decisions, we feel it when we let our sons and daughters make their own choices as they get older, and we feel it when we start a business. Risk is everywhere all the time in every situation really. Sometimes it renders us powerless and other times it catapults us into bravery. Our tolerance for risk might depend on our genetic make-up, our personality, our age or current situation. What feels risky today, might not feel so a year from now.

Today’s blog post is meant to have you think about the risks you have taken that have turned out both good and bad. When faced with risk today, do you look back at the outcomes of past risky decisions and how they can help you now? Have you ever not taken a risk and wished you had the opportunity again? If so, it was an important lesson to learn.

As Angelina so elegantly stated, “Life comes with many challenges. The ones that should not scare us are the ones we can take on and take control of.” What do you need to take control of today? What risk do you need to minimize by acting now as bravely as Angelina did?

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