There is a wealth of academic research that suggests that differences in risk appetite are at the heart of differences in career and business trajectories. We wanted to go beyond the theory and ask real people from the community about their perspectives and experiences with risk and risk taking.

Shay Andrews | Photographer

Risk taking is tricky because I think everyone views it so differently. I myself have not been a big risk taker in my life. I am very much a planner and someone that has taken the route where I have a good idea what the end of the road looks like. Of course we all know that there is little to no growth without taking risk, but it is hard to take that leap of faith. Read more>>

Gabriel Maestas | Barber

I think about risk as being an essential factor in business. If you’re risking it, you’re getting out of your comfort zone, and hopefully causing some growth of self, business, relationships etc. Risk taking has been absolutely imperative for the business! Leaving the first and only barbershop I had ever known or worked at was one of the hardest decisions I’ve made in my life and it has proven to work out in beautiful fashion. Read more>>

Alessia Tenebruso | Owner & Certified Life Coach

I believe taking risks leads to living a full life. If I had never taken the risk to begin solo traveling, even though I was scared to do anything alone, I would have never become the woman I am today. I’m so thankful I took the risk to begin solo traveling because even though it felt terrifying at the time, it taught me that I could do hard things. Read more>>

Natalie Binder | Entrepreneur

I believe pursuing your passion takes a certain amount of risk. From deciding to be a full-time ski bum to a corporate lawyer, there is a risk in what the outcome will actually produce and the trade off in quality of life. I have tried to strike a balance between risk, reward and following my heart. After college, I left behind a more structured corporate hospitality career to the work on a hotel development in a ski town. Read more>>

Cat Hardman | Professional Whitewater Kayaker

Risk-taking has played a decent role in my life and my career as a professional whitewater kayaker. When I was 15, I decided to attend World Class Academy, which is a college preparatory high school that combines academics, athletics, and culture emersion. Read more>>

Sophia Rae Barnes | Multimedia Artist & Singer

I’m definitely an impulsive person who is not afraid to take risks every once in a while. When it comes to my art, I think starting with a blank canvas can be intimidating, so being able to be courageous and taking risks is very important in my practice! Even when taking a risk doesn’t work out, there is always something to be learned from direct experience. Read more>>

Ann Adele Blassingame | Printmaker & Upcoming Tattoo Artist

Without implementing risk into many of the things I do, I would not be in the place I am currently, doing what I love to do. For me taking risks has been something shunned upon within my family. For them, risks are expected to lead to much harsher consequences which I think comes from generational traumas whether it be institutional racism or tragic death within the family. Read more>>

Linda Lidov | Communications Professional

Risk-taking has always played a role in my jobs as a communications professional, starting with my first job out of college. I’m sure it’s normal for many young adults to take jobs in subjects they know little about, but in my case, I truly was delving into new and unfamiliar territory. Read more>>

Andrew Strafaci | Founder of Cyndrom LLC

Risk is inherent in entrepreneurship. It is exceptionally difficult to build any business without taking on some risk. For me, running an action sports clothing brand, risk has been a factor of growing this company since day one. I am an attorney by trade, and it took a leap of faith to simply adjust my career path, and invest my savings, in order to pursue growing Cyndrom. Read more>>

Courtney Clark | Director of Operations

Risk can be a very scary word. [Risk is] An uncertain event or set of events which, should it occur, will have an effect on the achievement of objectives; a risk is measured by a combination of the probability of a perceived threat or opportunity occurring and the magnitude of its impact on objectives. Read more>>

Danny Crisafulli | Realtor, Real Estate Investor, Proud father of 2 very strong young women

Broad strokes – I have two girls ages 8 and 4. One thing I hope for them in life is that they will be confident enough and feel the freedom to chase the things they are curious about. Unfortunately, I think it’s common for people to feel pressured to “find their calling” or find “THE thing you’re passionate about.” Read more>>

Molly McGovern | Artist & Jewelry Maker

Throughout the past four years I have had several experiences that have drastically changed my concept of risk. The first experience was my partner and I’s decision to move into a van after graduating college. We both were raised in similar environments with an expectation for excellence, but both possessed an underlying itch to challenge what was expected of us. Read more>>

Kenny Kara Lydon | Happiness Guru

I feel that taking “the right risks” in life can allow you to truly open up your mind and heart to the acknowledgment that you’re capable of so much more. More than yourself or anyone around you thought possible. Being able to experience this wild ride we call life and push yourself to always be the best version of yourself. Read more>>