Monday, October 6, 2008

Taking Risks Changes the World

I was reading an interesting article today on which mentioned Brian Binnie, who piloted SpaceShipOne to win the Ansari X PRIZE back in 2004. The article was about risk, and what people are willing to risk in order to live their dreams, or to accomplish something.

Risk is one of the major principles we hold dear at the X PRIZE Foundation. Every prize that we launch is a risk. We're trying to change entire industries, entire ways of thought. We devote obscene amounts of time to development of these prizes, and have no way of knowing whether they will actually be won, or even if they are won, if that will make a difference. All we can do is our best, and then put our faith in humanity to find the solutions to these problems. Another risk. And of course, our teams take on enormous risk in attempting to win our prizes, quitting jobs and investing life's savings to try to make a difference.

The Forbes article gives a number of great examples of people who took major risks to be successful.

I think the biggest risk that I ever took was moving to LA right out of college without a job (or even a clear idea of what I wanted to do), no money, and no car. Fortunately, that risk paid off and I wound up working for the X PRIZE Foundation, where I have a chance to make a difference in the world.

What's the biggest risk that you've ever taken?

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