Essay: Risk taking

Risk-taking is an activity that may not define my natural line of action on a daily basis. I see myself as an individual more suited towards gaining full understanding of a given situation before making an attempt. This, of course, has both positive and negative connotations; positive in the light that it often entails reasonable amount of preparation before undertaking any endeavour, negative in the sense that there are certain things which must be done whether or not the whole picture is fully grasped, this may be due to their temporal or perishable nature. Some circumstances cannot be foreseen and only become clearer as they progress.
Even though someone may not describe themselves as risk-takers it does not remove them from the risks faced everyday by the mere fact of being alive. These risks are often regarded as mundane, the incentive in taking bigger risks lies in the benefits of the possibility of success as well as the ability and willingness to deal with the potential consequences of failure.
In the light of the above-mentioned, I have taken a few risks of my own, I have elected to narrate a business-related risk for the purpose and relevance of this essay. In my sophomore year as an undergraduate, I and a friend, who was also a course mate decided to take on a project that was primarily profit-oriented but also community-focused. A survey was carried out in order to provide input as to the major need as far as leisure was concerned. Our aim was to meet this need although we had absolutely no capital and, as the results of the survey would prove, inadequate technical knowledge or experience.
When the results of the survey came in, a public swimming pool was easily the overwhelming choice and most sought after recreational need which came as no surprise to both of us given the average weather was around 35 degrees Celsius. With the survey concluded we hoped to execute the next phase of the project by sourcing funds from potential investors such as hotel owners within the area, we hoped they would buy into the idea of a swimming pool in their premises. They were assured of a ready market based on the survey finds and a seal of commitment on our part being that we would get no revenue until the swimming pool was finished and in service.
Unfortunately, none of the hotels would consent to the idea, they either had no plans for such an expansion in the short term or no money to invest in it at all. These were the major reasons put forward but personally I would definitely point to our lack of technical experience or a re-assuring track record.
However, looking back on the experience it was my first venture in business and certain fundamental mistakes were made. We had not well versed ourselves in the area interest, the possible pitfalls, and most importantly our unique advantage therefore brimming with naive confidence we ended up selling ourselves short.
Also with the benefit of hindsight, I realize that before meeting every hotel manager, my fears were not irrational phobias but intuitive checks serving as reminders that a thorough job had not be done as regards preparation. This has helped going forward with subsequent business ventures, whenever there seems to be a lack of competence I seek out more information.
Finally, the experience, made me understand that certain times failure is the medium by which vital lessons can be taught. In these instances it is important to fail quickly and early so that recovery is possible soonest
All these point to the fact that we are who we are because of the experiences we have had, both the risks we successfully surmounted and those we fell to

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