In our experience, most folks, including ourselves don’t have enough of an understanding of risk and the role it plays in our lives and careers and so we have made a concerted effort as a team to have conversations about risk with our interviewees. We’ve shared some highlights below.

Brian Gratz | Gratz Creative Management, Owner

Instead of fearing unknown outcomes, I view risk taking as more of an opportunity. Taking risks has led me to where I am today in my business—from leaving my hometown and joining the military to making the financial commitment to starting my business—all of it would not be possible without taking a risk. When I started my business, I knew there would be many risks, including financial and competitive ones. Even when the outcome was not as I expected, I felt at peace with the decision knowing that I failed moving forward. Risk taking is a part of life and, although it is not always easy, taking risks has led me to a more fulfilling life in both business and personal aspects. Read more>>

Banks Compton | Artist, Graphic Designer, and Event Enthusiast

Life is the most rewarding when you take risks. Growing up on my family farm in rural Demopolis, Alabama I always dreamt of life elsewhere. There wasn’t much opportunity for me in my small town and I never felt like I was meant to stay. I wanted more than anything to be a painter, travel the world, and find where it is I belong. As a teenager, these ambitions where not exactly typical among my peers, but I was supported by my family and friends to take a chance on the world. So, I did. Read more>>

Nikki Santigati | Topical Herbalist & Founder of Copper Crescent Botanicals

Choosing your career path is probably one of the toughest choices in life. Working for yourself involves a lot of risk but definitely has high rewards. When I graduated from college I was given the opportunity to choose my own path. My father asked me what I was passionate about. That question changed my life and challenged the way I had viewed my life and career. Was it possible to have it all? What steps are needed to make this dream a reality? What does my company stand for and what is our mission? What products can I make to help others like myself? How much was I willing to sacrifice? How can I continue to stay innovative and provide education for the community? These questions and many more shaped me and my company into what is today. Read more>>

Clanci Conover | Independent Creative

I am a relatively frequent risk taker – Not being afraid to push the envelope and challenge societal expectations is very important for me personally and for my brand. I have always been a creative, even before I was making my own jewelry at age 13 to fund a service trip to the Philippines. The nature of my goals entail risk and uncertainty, which translates to my creative practices as an entrepreneur, photographer, curator, and jewelry maker. I moved to Tucson from NYC a year after lockdown with no specific prospects or connections there, which many would consider foolish – I always make it work and am better for taking the leap in the first place, whether in my own life or in my practice. Read more>>

Jasmine Holmes | Digital Marketer and Strategist

Though I’m not afraid of the unknowns inherent in taking risks, I also don’t take blind leaps. For a while now, I’ve said that I love taking “calculated” risks. I find pushing myself exhilarating but need to have enough knowledge to feel confident in my choice. I like situations where there’s no way I can be certain of an outcome but based on the information that I have the gains outweigh the losses. Read more>>

Michael Treat | Actor, writter, and PA

I feel risk taking is an essential part to my career’s success so far, as well as to succeeding in what lies ahead. I feel that taking risks has sent me up for where I wanna be as well as where I must go. I took one of the biggest risks of my life so far with one other friend at a young age of 19 and decided that in a year we were gonna move out of my hometown where I have lived my entire life and move to california to pursue my dream of acting. In doing this not only have i started to learn lessons of life but i have been blessed to now be in the industry. I am learning from the people that I have dreamed to one day work with and am still on that path. Everyday I work in this industry. I am learning how to take calculated risks to further myself and keep my dream alive. Read more>>

Whitney Donohue | Naturopathic Physician & Professional Applied Kinesiologist

I feel like taking risks is all part of the process. Risks can be both terrifying and exciting at the same time as they exceed our boundaries and push us out of our comfort zones, which we all know is where the magic happens! Taking risks has brought about some of the most amazing adventures of my life. I picked up and moved to California to finish college without knowing a single person or visiting the place I was moving to. I took a huge risk by applying to Naturopathic Medical School, unaware of the process and where it would lead me! I then took a solo backpacking trip across South East Asia after I finished my medial boards and it propelled me into the most amazing adventure back to myself! Read more>>

Lawrence Hearn | Music Producer / Songwriter

This is an excellent question, as there are a myriad of different perspectives one could draw upon when attempting to answer it. For me, it’s pretty simple. There’s that ago old idiom “Fortune Favors The Bold”. Or “No Risk No Reward”. Of course, you can find yourself falling into a fairly reckless spiral if these schools of thought aren’t approached with some modicum of nuance, but I do tend to just roll the dice and see what happens. I never wanted to be a 9 to 5, house, kids etc kind of person. That works great for some people and I don’t begrudge them that. For me, my art and pursuit of improving upon it are paramount and essential to my very existence; so I really have no choice but to take risks (and believe me, I’ve taken a lot of them). Read more>>

Brandon J Bird | Natural wellness entrepreneur and public health advocate

I’ve decided to answer this question because of all the choices, this the one I don’t have a previously considered answer for. I also sense it would be useful to me to consider and apprehend in some way we’ll arrive at together. It sounds simple but I’ve come to believe risk calculus is not only crucial, its a moving target with nuance the new among us struggle with -as I did. I’d say I am over-exposed to risk, maybe even jaded to it. That sounds dangerous but it actually helps assessing and addressing it. Thats the first thing I realize as I write this, risk simply required exposure for me to feel confident managing it. Read more>>