What Are You Playing For?


Every business has risk, and every risk needs to be managed. Your opinion and emotions around risk will vary depending on your position, role, and personality. This is ok. The problem comes when you approach risk with the wrong mindset.

Playing to win...or playing to not lose.

Some people want to win while others hate to lose. The latter of the two will keep you from growth.When I played high school baseball, I went through the first half of my freshman season with really bad hitting slump.After one of my games my dad told me he could tell I was not at the plate to get a hit. I was up there to not strike out. It took a few more games to work this thought into my confidence. Soon I was back to hitting. But, it was too late. The next year I was cut from the team due to my reputation of being a poor hitter.I am glad I learned this lesson in high school because I have been able to carry the wisdom into my adult life. Whenever I am not hitting goals I can quickly ask, “Am I playing to win or playing to not lose?”I see this happen everyday. Folks make the safe, average choice because everyone else is doing it.They stay at a job instead of trying for a new role or starting a business.They make purchases based on what other people are doing instead of breaking from the crowd.They don’t speak up because they are afraid of what others will think.It’s much safer staying in the herd than it is searching for food on your own. The herd is where it feels comfortable.The problem is when the herd is heading towards danger. You can’t see it from the inside. It’s too crowded.

Playing to win.

Your BEST option for maximum effectiveness and fulfillment is to be the fastest and most agile member of your herd.Is it the most risky. Absolutely. There is more pain in the front, for sure. There is more judgement and more criticism too.It’s also the place that positions you to lead, direct, and impact the herd.Why wait to start a new career, position, or company?Why wait to make the choice that could've changed the trajectory of your business?Why wait to for everyone else to buy the thing you want to make sure it is a secure choice.Why wait to do what you need to do in order to grow?You can follow the herd if you want. It’s safe there...for now.

Are you playing to win or just playing to not lose?