I always thought I was a risk-taker, which was convenient since people in business development and scary big sales have to be risk-takers. Now I wonder if I am a big risk-taker.
Years ago, during my team’s years-long pursuit of a scary-big multi-million-dollar Air Force contract, I never for one second doubted my firm would win. I knew I would be fired from my six-figure job if we lost, since I’d spent a large overhead budget and hadn’t billed even one hour of billable time in close to a year. So you could say it was a scary-big risk.
I wasn’t worried
It was a calculated risk and my calculations showed we would win. Most importantly, I had good evidence that we knew the client’s deepest real need for the project and our solution was the best in the client’s eyes. Our engineering team was the strongest. I had good evidence we had a winning price. Now all I had to do was rely on the world’s best proposal team, a marvel of quality and team spirit (thanks, Wayne and Joy). I knew the risk of that marvelous team letting me down was zero.
The risk was almost zero
I am a risk-taker, but the largest win in my career was low risk, because I had calculated what we had to do to win, and the team made it come true. Always calculate your risks. When your risk comes out high, plan and do what it will take to win anyway. Now your risk is lower. Go win it.