280: Why entrepreneurship isn’t as risky as you think

A lot of people think entrepreneurship is about taking risks. And sure, to an extent it is, but it’s a series of calculated risks, and entrepreneurs have more control over their life and outcomes than the rest of the population. I don’t know that it’s not riskier to be an employee at a company with no control over your own destiny. And this isn’t true for all employment relationships, but there are a lot of jobs that have no control over the work they do, company direction, or even their own career path. So really, what’s riskier?

In March of 2020, 17% of Americans lost their job when the economy froze up due to COVID. That’s risk. Employees can get laid off at a moment’s notice because of decisions that they had no say in. People look at Steve Jobs and Elon Musk and the massive risks that they took, but they then associate all entrepreneurship and all investing with risk.

How much of your life and destiny is in your control? To me, having control is less risky. As an entrepreneur, I can control what happens. I control who we hire, what customers we go after, how much money we spend and where we spend it, and how we invest. It feels less risky to me than being out of control and having no say in the company that controls my income.

You can go about entrepreneurship the right way, making unemotional decisions, making strategic bets, and have more control than you’d think. Everything my partner and I used to complain about–employees, the market, customers–were all things that we realized were in our control. Finding good talent, marketing, setting up our staff for success, we controlled all of it, and we found success doing it.

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About Me

I started the Sweaty Startup in December of 2018 because I believe the Shark Tank and Tech Crunch culture is ruining the real spirit of low-risk entrepreneurship.