Monday, 5 May 2008

To Achieve Success be Prepared to Take Risks

To achieve success you cannot afford to be risk adverse.

On Friday morning I received an email with a request for an interviewer to conduct a high-profile interview later that day for an online magazine. There was no other information but since I conduct professional interviews I said I would be willing to do the interview.

However, I didn't receive confirmation until nearly 3:00pm GMT and the interview was scheduled for 11:00am EST. In other words I would have about an hour to prepare for the interview.

My interviewee was someone who operated a multi-million dollar business, had appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show, had a long line of A-list celebrity clients, had been featured in Oprah, People, USA Today and InStyle magazines and, as I later discovered, had been interviewed by Barbara Walters.

Yet somehow she had escaped my radar. I had not heard of my client before and so I had nothing to go on. Fortunately, her passion was in two areas which I identified with and had a keen interest in and that certainly helped.

Thank goodness for the Internet. I was able to do some quick research on my guest. Also, thank goodness for InstantTeleseminars because, this gave me a quick, easy and professional platform from which I could conduct the interview and have it immediately recorded and available online.

I have to admit that I was a little nervous about asking my guest to phone a bridge line. She might have considered it an imposition but she was absolutely fine about it and we had a few minutes to chat before the interview officially started.

I have to say that I thoroughly enjoyed conducting the interview. My guest was fascinating. I felt inspired listening to her tell her story of how she created her business starting with nothing and grew it into a multi-million dollar business using the power of referrals and sheer guts.

My guest shared with me some of her dreams and aspirations and when she mentioned that she had been interviewed by Barbara Walters I didn't feel intimidated. Instead, I raised my own aspirations and thought to myself that one day I want people to say with pride:

"I was interviewed by Nickolove Lovemore."

I can't share the actual interview just yet but my point in sharing this story with you is that sometimes you have to take risks to get ahead in life.

You may think that interviewing someone is easy and in many ways it is but there is an art to conducting an intimate interview. This could have backfired which would have been embarrassing not just for myself but my client.

There are several things within the interview that I know I could have done better and I am grateful for that level of awareness. Still, I felt a deep connection with my guest. I felt jazzed just by talking to her.

So, all in all, I'm glad that on Friday I listened to my intuition and went for it. And, I was honest with my guest too, saying that I had only about an hour to prepare for the interview. It wasn't that I was trying to make excuses. It was more of an apology because the interview certainly warranted more thorough preparation.

This brings me to another point - to achieve success you also have to be prepared. I had certain structures/systems in place that enabled me to take advantage of this opportunity. I also undertake training.

Whatever your field, you will know the structures and systems that you need to have in order to be effectively prepared for your day-to-day business as well as unexpected situations that can help to advance your position. You also need to know what ongoing training you need in order to keep your blade sharp.

So when presented with a potentially exciting opportunity that could also be risky have the courage to say "yes" and figure out how you're going to make it work afterwards. Have faith in your abilities that you will find a way to turn the opportunity into a success.

"Do not fear risk. All exploration, all growth is calculated. Without challenge people cannot reach their higher selves. Only if we are willing to walk over the edge can we become winners."

The picture accompanying this post is a clue to my interviewee's identity so stay tuned and see if you can guess the name of the person I interviewed.

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