Sink or Swim: Entrepreneurs Learn to Manage Risk

Man falls into the depthsPart of managing any project also means managing risks. Project managers learn to identify, categorize, and effectively respond to risks with experience. While many entrepreneurs might stem from some form of project management experience, many learn to address, manage, and respond to project and business risk through trial and error and experimentation.

If you are reading this and think this sounds, well, risky…it is. Unfortunately, many entrepreneurs who take a leap of faith and plunge into business often fall short, failing to properly address risks, and losing the business as a whole.

Here are some ways entrepreneurs can take the bull by the horns and learn to manage and address risk…before it’s too late.

Think Outside the Box for Creative Solutions. When entrepreneurs are first presented with a project or conflict that requires a solution or a risk response action, most make the mistake of fully immersing themselves in the problem itself. While this is often human nature, it isn’t necessarily the most effective course of action.

Sometimes it is best to disengage yourself from the conflict or problem and look at it from a different light (or after a good night’s sleep!) Thinking outside the box and looking at a conflict or project from a creative perspective often results in effective, creative solutions that are also successful.

Accept that There Will Be Problems. Since many entrepreneurs are faced with wearing multiple “hats” on a regular basis, it can be difficult to let go of some control and accept that there will be conflict from time to time. However, learning to accept that problems will arise now and again can help entrepreneurs keep a level head when they do occur.

Entrepreneurs put so much time, effort, and emphasis into ensuring the business runs like a well-oiled machine that it is often difficult to accept when we make mistakes. When conflict arises, sometimes they take it as a personal attack and reflection on management style and performance. However, this isn’t always the case. It is in the nature of every business to deal with conflict and problems from time to time.

Learning By Doing. Entrepreneurs who are ready to become entrepreneurs often jump in with both feet. Sure, there are hundreds of educational programs, training opportunities, and even professional development options that can aid an entrepreneur in learning how to successfully run a business. However, sometimes there is no better way to learn the ropes of running a business and managing risk than by doing.

Finally, while there technically is no “right” or “wrong” ways to manage projects, business, and risks, there are methodologies that are certainly more successful than others. The other variable to managing projects and risks is the entrepreneur’s personality and attitude. If an entrepreneur maintains a positive attitude and is willing to jump in and swim and provide creative solutions to projects, teams, and customers, business will be that much more successful.

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About Julie

Julie Anne Hoey is the owner and founder of J. H. Language Solutions. She has over four years experience in publishing as a full time editor and project manager. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish from Anna Maria College in Paxton, Massachusett. The main focus of her personal and professional studies has always been language. Her project management experience began while she was working for Victory Productions, a small publishing house in Worcester, MA. She now holds a position at Pearson Learning Solutions, the largest textbook publisher in the world, managing an initiative to ensure that custom higher ed textbooks are more relevant and cost effective for students. As the textbook publishing industry is facing steep competition from digital format books, she has learned to work closely with professors, adopters and field editors all over the country to ensure projects are seen through to successful completion. Her own consulting business, J. H. Language Solutions, is dedicated to helping businesses and individuals with their language needs and challenges whether it be translation, editing, writing blogs, or project management. She can be hired via her oDesk page: