Risk vs. Chance


Risk and chance, 2 words I had previously thought were synonymous. After reading Kreigel’s unconventional wisdom on taking risk I have a different idea of Risk and chance. The Author suggest that risk are absolutely necessary in order to get what you want, stating, “everything worthwhile carries the risk of failure.” Taking a moment to reflect on all the things that I consider “worthwhile” I realized they were not met without risk involved. I would not have learned anything without taking risk. Risk teach you. I still consider myself a novice cook. Even when I make a dish and receive rave reviews, I like to change it up the next time and add a few different ingredients. Sometimes they work out and sometimes they just don’t but either way I am glad I took a risk and dared to be bold even if it is just at home in my kitchen.

Now let’s take a trip to my office or any business at that. There will always be those employees that are too scared to rock the boat. They do not want to take risk out of fear that they will no longer be a “good” employee. Conventional thinking has ingrained in us this thought that if we go through the motions and do our work then we will be all the better. This notion is just not relevant anymore. Companies know that taking risk leads to successes and they are looking for those employees that are standing out, thinking outside the box, and taking RISK.

So what is considered a risk you may ask?  A risk should not be considered this dangerous, hazardous, thing that involves extreme sports like most of us would naturally think of. That is where risk and chance differ. Risk takers have actually prepared and researched, they know what they are up against and every outcome of any misstep. This leaves nothing to CHANCE. When you make calculated risk it decreases fear and increases your confidence. The author insist “know your limits,” while it is ok to take risk it is not ok to do crazy things that could put your life or others in danger.

I figured there were always 2 kinds of people, the ones that colored inside the lines never daring to venture out and then those creatives that were always trying something new, taking risk.  However we are all born risk takers. I have a 17 month old daughter and every day of her life I can tell she is learning something new and taking risk, from the time she took her first steps to most recently eating with a spoon. Each risk has been met with it’s challenges but if she did not take them she would not grow. My daughter does not think about the end result (becoming an adult) but focuses on what she can learn now. So fellow risk-taker, do your research, don’t do anything crazy, and trust the process.

3 Replies to “Risk vs. Chance”

  1. Hello,

    Thank you for your post. I consider myself more of a risk adverse person but really to the point of your post I am a calculated risk taker. I am not a fly by the seat of my pants type. I will never by choice leave a job before having something new secured. I insisted that our mortgage is well below our means even though we could afford more house if we wanted. I think that when people say risk in our society it typically refers to taking blind risks. I think that people should be encouraged to do the math, think things through, look at the different potential outcomes.

    I enjoyed reading your post. I love your message on balance when it comes to taking risks. I agree that we need more people to challenge the current state in productive ways.



  2. Caitlin,

    This was an inspiring post! I had no idea that there was a difference between “risk” and “chance” either, but the way you laid it out, makes a lot of sense, I also love what you said about employees and how they are afraid to take risks, but companies want that. I would agree, but I also think that if this is the route companies want us to move in they have to be open to failure. I am not saying that they should be open to someone investing millions on something they did not research to support, but I am saying that they have to be supportive when we fail. I think that is the fear most creative people have. I am risk take, but not financially. It does however take me a lot of thinking and time to make that step. I don’t like doing things on a whim. I have to think about the process and scenarios.

    Thank you for sharing!


  3. Seeing risk as a positive can be tough for those of us who are risk averse. My husband finds it invigorating and sees it as a sign that he is on the right path. I sometimes see it as a feeling of warning. I guess it depends on the person. I am very calculated in my behavior and I am sure this is my coping mechanism to avoid leaving things to chance.


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