Is now the time to take risks?

 | Courtney Abud

We know we’re not the first to point this out, but it bears repeating: 2020 was not anyone’s year. In addition to the usual business challenges, the economy has been rattled by pandemics, social issues, and politics. This upheaval has really required business leaders to take a look at their plans and pivot — quickly.

We saw this need to pivot happen with both our clients and internally as well. Finding our footing — and helping our clients find theirs — was a new challenge, but here’s the thing…we embrace the unconventional. So, finding ways to safely bring live music to audiences without losing intimacy? Awesome. And reimaging established sales enablement tools to account for new work-from-home personas? All over it.

But solving these challenges required something that most companies are pretty averse to taking risks.

I can hear you already.

“Now is not the time to take risks!”

But isn’t it? Like we said at the top, the same challenges we’ve always faced still exist. We are still trying to generate revenue, increase productivity, secure our systems…the list goes on and on. The difference is that our current scenario requires us to look at these challenges with a new perspective. And that might be exactly what we need to find valuable solutions.

Take Responsible Risks

There’s something to be said for calculated risks. Let’s take your marketing for example. Your reputation is important —do you want to make bold statements and stand out as a confident leader during these times? Or do you want to water down your message and tiptoe around the issue until your business fades into obscurity?

The key is to have a partner you can trust to upset that status quo in the best ways. Let them guide you, but remember that risk experimentation shouldn’t be sloppy. Keep your high standards and expect an outstanding delivery. When your risk pays off, you can celebrate the hard work together.

Lead by Example

It often takes a total culture shift to embrace this kind of change, but it has to start somewhere. Stand up for your thinking. Do your research. Sometimes, an idea seems pretty risky until you dig a little and find that it’s not so novel after all. When you can back your idea up with a well-thought strategy, your confidence becomes contagious.

Although many companies now have their teams spread out across a remote landscape, that’s no excuse for neglecting culture. Keep taking the time to foster creativity and out-of-the-box thinking.

Ultimately, it’s important not to let corporate culture stand in the way of creating authentic human connections. Be a pioneer of finding a better way and your colleagues will be sure to follow.

Break Down Barriers

We often find that unknown risk creates invisible, unnecessary barriers for clients. They are thinking ten steps ahead and imagining all the ways a project can go wrong. Sometimes this is a great exercise. It’s obviously useful to look at a challenge from many angles. Other times, this forces us to make assumptions about our audience that may or may not be true.

Ask yourself—is this really a risk, or is this an unfounded assumption? How can we test against the assumption? If you can, do some polling or focus groups to gain clarity. If that’s not possible,

look at the project as an evolving entity. Launch knowing that you will learn along the way and can optimize over time. This will allow you to take a risk that leads to reward no matter how you look at it—either your decision pays off, or it doesn’t but you learn how to improve.

Where To Start?

We challenge you in the next week or so to identify a risk, evaluate it, then take it. You may just find the riskiest thing to do is not to take any risks at all. An organization at a complete standstill is dangerous, and sometimes risks are what we need to get things unstuck and moving again.

About Haute

Haute helps clients engage more meaningfully to make a lasting impression. With unique Rules to Engagement, our team delivers targeted, customized, and highly creative marketing, sales, and event services designed to foster meaningful connections. To learn more about our extensive list of client services and capabilities, visit 

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