We asked some of the most interesting folks in the community to open up about how they think about taking chances and the role risk has played in their lives and careers. Risk is by far the topic folks talk to us most about and we hope the responses below will help shed light on many different perspectives.

Ro Taylor: Veteran & Apparel Brand CEO

Risks is something that a person will have to get comfortable with taking if they want to be successful in anything that they do. Risks has played a major role in my life because it has allowed me to bet on myself. As a person that loves to have life planned out down to the smallest details it took a lot of courage for me to enter the entrepreneur world but I always knew that I was so much bigger then a 9-5 job. Read more>>

Taylor Banks: Therapist, Speaker, Author & Coach

I learned very early on that anything worth doing would take risk. The question has always been will I allow the presence of risk to keep me from doing, saying, believing, building, launching etc. or will I do it in spite of the risk. I’ve decided that I would rather do it scared then to not do it at all and never know if it could have worked. Only people who are able to take risks get to see the potential fruit of their faith. I’m living by risky faith. Read more>>

Gabrielle Chapman: Vocalist & Abstract Artist

Taking a risk is the difference between standing out and blending into the background. As a creative you have to have a certain level of insanity to willingly put yourself out there like that. It requires an extreme amount of vulnerability and courage. For as long as I can remember- if there’s a risk to be taken, I want to be a part of the action. The magic for me is being able to shift the vibe of a whole room (hopefully for the better). Read more>>

Arielle Winfield: Millennial Change-Maker & Founder of Sessions

Risk is an inevitable part of an entrepreneur’s life and career. Everybody is different, therefore every person has a different appetite for risk and that’s where self-awareness becomes extremely necessary. If you know that you’re a risk averse individual, entrepreneurship likely isn’t the career path best suited for you. Read more>>

Rafiyq Cromwell: CEO/Director of Sports Operations at Privé Management Group

Risk are a big part of success and growing; without risk there’s no reward. Of course when taking risk there always a risk tolerance you must be honest with yourself about but always playing it safe will hinder your growth. Life and success is really like a game of what you can do for others and how you can use your success to impact others. Read more>>

Yxng Don: Rapper

Taking risks has played a MAJOR role in, when I first started rapping a lot of individuals who I was close to at the time said some pretty discouraging things that would make me think wow maybe I wouldn’t sound right. I took everything they said and turned it into pressure. When I listen to my project that will be dropping in august, I think to myself like I’m glad I took that risk and proved every last person wrong I get such a great response from snippets to just me being in the studio. I just get so much love just as much hate. You never know what’s out there. Taking that risk got me a few great opportunities! Read more>>

Brandon Covington: Owner & Chef of Bear Pizzeria

You know that old saying, no risk no award. From my life experience, playing it safe gets you nowhere. One of the reason why I took a risk & started my own business is I’m a natural born leader & working for someone’s company was never my thing. Honestly, taking risk has been positive in my life. Read more>>

Brian Reeves: Business Owner of B.Cooking,LLC and Master Cook

I think risk is required for life. Especially when you are treading in unfamiliar territory and creating a new reality for yourself you have never experienced. In order to succeed in life you must take risk. I remember when I was at the crossroads of going into business full time. I was working a job as an enrollment specialist, and honestly my work started to suffer. Read more>>

Amber Topps: Mobile bartend owner

I think about risk a lot. I weigh my options out before making any decision. Taking risk important when first starting a business. Starting a business itself is a risk, you invest your money, time, energy and reputation in hopes people will support you, and not just once but continuously. Read more>>

Hunter Li: Model/ Hair Enthusiast

I see risks as opportunities we are all faced with in our everyday lives, and what we do with those opportunities defines our present, and future. Anything we do in life is a risk, whether it’s taking out a loan, changing work forces,or deciding to wear mixed print to make a fashion statement. By taking those risks it leaves us open to failure, disappointment, or at some points we can get discouraged, and lose hope in what we thought was the right decision for ourselves. Read more>>

Jas Rosales: Business Owner: Talent Agency, Production Company & Digital Marketing Agency

This is a great question because my philosophy in the way I scale my business is fueled by the elements of fear, risk and faith. These are key ingredients for me! Everything I do in some form or shape embody these three things. Without it, my passion cannot be ignited. I plan to a certain extent understanding that things may not go as planned, and I’ve become so aware that it’s exciting to see unimaginable outcomes that turn out better than initially desired. Read more>>

Stacy Fleming: Entrepreneur

“The bigger the risk, the bigger the reward”. Although I didn’t always have that mindset 100%, that is one quote I truly live by now. I’ve taken many risks to get to where I am today. Starting a business was definitely a risk alone, but it was worth it. Things don’t always start out the way you may prefer, but eventually it pays off. My time, money, attention, innovation, and energy was sacrificed in order to grow as an entrepreneur and leader. Read more>>

Naseed Gifted: Creative Director & Writer

Risk taking is something that so many people fear because of the unknown. The key to risk taking is to be able to accept that business can be a success or failure. You have to be willing to take failure and do the necessary work to be successful in future attempts. Developing an Entertainment Studio that produces comics and animation without having a background in art or animation is a huge risk and decreases your probability of success. Read more>>

Jermaine Kenney: Photographer

Risk taking is a tricky game in life but it’s a game that should always be played because you’ll never know where life will take you if you don’t take some risks. I feel like a lot of people are scared of failure & are so prone to just move on to the next thing. I mean that’s ok for most, but as far as someone trying to find themselves in this world & do whatever makes them happy you gotta take the risks that come on the path you take. Read more>>

Michelle Li: Owner & Master Trainer at AIR® Aerial Fitness | Los Angeles

There’s a big difference in Eastern vs Western mentality when it comes to risk taking and debt. In the East, people tend to be a bit more risk adverse. I’m going to use China as an example since that’s where I’m from. Many people in China still do not own credit cards (compared to the US) and China actually only recently (1980’s) allowed citizens to own property and take out mortgages. Before that, all housing development was owned by the Chinese government. Read more>>

Timothy Cunningham: Artist

Bravery has always proven to be a key asset in my career, however, risk taking has opened way more doors than just bravery. This more recent characteristic adoption has proven to be a winning tactic once research and whiteboarding has been done. Read more>>

Chavala Potts: Licensed Esthetician & CEO of Allthingsvala LLC

Risk over regret. This is actually how I was able to begin my business. I had already finished Beauty school to become a licensed esthetician and I knew I wanted to start a business. I wasn’t sure how to fund it. I happened to receive a call from a former coworker friend about a business opportunity. I knew I had been praying and manifesting so I figured it was a sign. I jumped on a zoom call for Tava Lifestyle, took a risk and joined the company. Read more>>

James Ansah

My mentality around risk is that no risk, no reward. In society today I feel like people put a negative view behind risk but I really feel that risk builds character! Positive calculated risk that is. We are constantly taking risks on a daily we sometimes are not conscious of like getting in a car and driving and hopping on a plane to travel. Read more>>

Dez Carter: Graphic Designer/ Digital Illustrator

Deciding to launch my brand was truly a risk in itself. Being a part-time student in college, while also working full-time in my career provided me with a challenge that most would stave away from. What encouraged me to move forward was understanding that without risk there is no reward. Read more>>

Darrell Noe: CCO / Owner – Seventy Seven Collective

Taking risks is scary, no matter your age, skill level, or personal goals in life. Leaving the comfort of a big corporate job with great benefits and salary when you are the sole provider for your family is about as risky as it gets. But the payoff has been worth it times 1000. Read more>>

Jaydelise Volquez: Actress

There’s always risk involved in choosing a creative career. Before I took the risk that changed my life, I had a very stable job that I was knowledgeable in. Over time I started feeling like I wasn’t living my purpose, like I was just going through the motions, and not spending enough time doing what I love. So on a random day I decided to quit. Read more>>