Diving in the Shallow End
Are you conservative or aggressive? Are you more Warren Buffet or Richard Branson? Is one of them reckless and the other careful?
I say they’re more alike than you think.
It comes down to a topic I’ve touched on several times — risk. Both take risks but they are not risky — they find ways to minimize and manage risk.
Risk in business is like a swimmer approaching a pool. Diving into the water is not a risky thing on its own but diving into a pool with an unknown depth is.
Doing your research, finding out the depth of the pool, then planning your entry is how you minimize risk. The angle of entry is how you manage risk. What neither Warren Buffet nor Richard Branson do is dive in the shallow end, the risk is too high. Instead they seek out the deep end. The deep end offers the most benefit with the least risk. It might still be dangerous but it’s less dangerous.
Of course once the research is done and the decision is made you still have to dive in and that’s what a lot of people don’t do, or wait too long to do and miss out on the opportunity. Once the key information is determined you have to move. Like a quote I used in the chapter called Risk in What Next, Lee Ioccoca, former CEO of Chrysler said: ““I have always found that if I move with seventy-five percent or more of the facts that I usually never regret it. It’s the guys who wait to have everything perfect that drive you crazy.”
So avoid diving in the shallow end but do dive in!