The Universe of Risk

The Universe of Risk

By Olowu Modebola Anne

Risk: It’s in the air you breathe,

In your drinking water, in your car, while you walk, while you sleep.

It’s at your backyard, even in your house, place of worship and your place of work.

There is risk everywhere.

It doesn’t matter you been risk averse, because that in itself is also a risk. Risk is just part of our existence, it’s an inherent necessary evil that one shouldn’t ignore but rather weaponize into a positive drive to yield beautiful results.

As, Esme Bianco simply put it ‘You can’t get anywhere in life without taking risks’. So, not only are human beings ‘Risk Takers’ but we are also ‘Risk tamers’.

In today’s modern society, folks are defied by risks from natural disasters, financial markets, man-made disasters, nuclear power plants, Cyber security and privacy issues, IT challenges and so many more. It’s a steep unending list of uncertainties and areas in which the risk of damage plays a diabolical role. It is therefore not surprising that organizations and enterprises spend a bulk of money in having resilient Risk management systems and individuals are also geared to hedge their risks through various means. It’s made us proactive enough to design frameworks on how to assemble the society in the perfect dealing order…

So, who is a Risk Taker?

Coombs’ theory postulates that each person has an idyllic risk level and that in choosing among lotteries with equal expectations the person will select the lottery that is closest to his/her ideal risk level. So, the subject of risk taking as not totally evaded from the act of decision making.

A risk taker is an individual who simply takes risk.

They are always very practical in their decision-making patterns, they usually leverage on facts and irrationally come to terms with their plans. They would rather play all the scenarios in their head before putting down a blue print of it.

They are born self-critics who try the path and road less travelled. They don’t care the consequences of their results in the first 5mins of thoughts conviction. They see a path, believe in it and give it a go, even despite failing at several attempts towards the same goal. They don’t give up and they always create solutions; because they always find new ways of doing the same thing but smarter and in many cases, faster and pleasing.

My favourite line from a risk taker is ‘I just went with my guts’

Just like Captain Joe Glass from the movie ‘Hunter Killer’ who never gave his US sub Navy Seals the authorization to fire back at the Russians. It was almost going to be a disaster if the Russian war ship had not defended them. But really, that was a major risk taker.

Some famous risk takers are: Bill gates, Warren Buffett, Donald Trump, Henry Ford, Richard Branson, Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos,Jack Ma etc

And what does it mean to be a Risk Tamer?

A risk tamer may either be a risk taker or not, this is just an individual that is confronted with an inherent or residual risk and finds an economic and effective way of analysing the risk, evaluating and controlling it; by transferring the risk, accepting it or mitigating it.

This is what life really is all about, either you are managing an active spare tyre on the road or you are trading just one at a time basket of volatility ETFs (exchange-traded fund). A risk tamer develops a methodological approach to dealing with their circumstances and soon moves from high risk points to low risk points.

They are also fast thinkers and would usually use the line.

‘I saw it coming and I just had to pull it down’.

They are strategic in every way and will always pass for making the wrong decisions at a go. Their businesses last longer, and they are usually employed by risk takers to help them manage their risks or organizations.

Some famous risk tamers are: Condoleezza Rice, Larry page, Hillary Clinton, Henry Ford, Larry Ellison, Jeff Bezos etc.

To sum it up, as an individual, you should evaluate yourself and proactively make yourself someone who knows how to manage the diverse existing risks, because it is really only then, you know when to take the ‘said’ risks and also know how to tame them, making you become the boss of Risk itself- what I love to call, becoming A risk manager.

So, either as an individual or an enterprise, when you know how to manage risk, you have successfully sieved your fears away from the power of innovation, by taking the risk or when you set your thresholds and actively check your risks against your productivity, positively then you understand that risk as only been a blessing.

Some famous risk managers are: Jeff Bezos, Howard Schultz, Mark Zuckerberg, Bre Pettis etc



‘A Theory of Risk’ by Alexander Pollastek & Amos Tvers

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