by Debbie Ruston, Featured Contributor
RISK…..it’s as scary as a haunted house! At least that is the way we treat risk. Society has been so conditioned to fear risk and take every step possible to avoid it. Before you read any further, write down the FIRST word that comes to mind when you think of risk.
Many of us have grown up through the industrial era, when businesses required workers to manufacture goods. It was not advantageous for companies to have people that thought for themselves and create their own work, according to corporations that needed laborers. They needed people to conform and work for them so they could reach THEIR goals.
During this time, people were led to believe they would be looked after if they worked for a corporation. They felt safe. They were conditioned to believe they need corporations in order to survive, and this created “job security”. It also instilled FEAR, that unless someone “hires” you, you will not survive and it is much too risky to become an entrepreneur. As long as an individual accepts this thinking, they will be at the effect of an employer and their decisions.
It’s not that individuals are not capable of taking risk….they do this when:
-buying a car – tens of thousands of dollars that depreciates as soon as it’s driven off the lot, until it goes to the junk yard.
-buying a home – most agree to pay off hundreds of thousands of dollars over 25 years.
-buying T.V.’s, furniture, appliances on credit.
As we have seen in the last few years, there is no longer such a thing as “job security”. Downsizing and layoffs, only hiring people on contract basis, have all become the new norm of the business world. Now that job security is a thing of the past, how does a person who has been conditioned to fear risk take a step to create their own work? It starts with re-framing, or re-training your brain to THINK differently about risk, and getting risk working for you, instead of against you.
We are capable beings. We are born and learn so many things that allow us to become self reliant in so many areas. We learn to walk, talk, feed ourselves, think, create, and take care of ourselves in so many ways. When it comes to work, most give away all their power to an employer because we are so conditioned to believe it is too risky to work for ourselves.
Many people simply do not THINK for themselves. This is an an area so many give away all their personal power, and just accept the information being fed to them through media and society in general.
Think for a moment about a couple of factors. The more people that work for employers, the bigger the tax base they create. Self employed people have many tax benefits so they do not pay as much into taxes. From a government perspective, what would you want? A bigger tax paying base through employees, or a smaller tax base through entrepreneurs?
Something else to consider is the company perspectives. If people feel they “need” a company to hire them and they do not have the confidence to create their own work, the companies have more people to choose from, there is never a shortage. There are so many people competing for the same jobs, so companies can be selective and have control. They decide what they will pay, and if a person does not agree, they can find work elsewhere because there are lots of others that will accept the conditions of the job.
Today in our changed world, there is no such thing as job security. We don’t just have to rely on our local economy to find work. Technology and the internet has given people the opportunity to tap into the global economy. An individual that is making the decision to become more self reliant through entrepreneurship can create work all over the world (if they choose) by utilizing all the technology options available. Platforms like Linkedin allow people to connect with individuals and companies that are relevant to their sector to collaborate on a global scale.
If you are ready to take the step into entrepreneurship, but have a fear of risk, ask yourself:
-What was the first word I wrote down in relation to risk at the start of this article? Do you see how your perception needs to change?
-How risky is it to work for an employer that can eliminate your job tomorrow?
-How risky is it to buy a vehicle for tens of thousands of dollars that will continue to cost money and depreciate?
-How risky is it to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars over the course of a mortgage, along with all the upkeep costs such as a new roof, windows, furnaces, air conditioners, etc.?
Why do you accept those risks, but have never embraced the risk of being able to create your future on purpose, by your design? Then, re-frame your perception and belief around risk by asking yourself – How Can I Responsibly Implement Specialized Knowledge to take control in creating my own work and start providing my OWN job security?
EDITOR’S NOTE: This Article was originally featured on Linkedin