Eventually, this fear will inhibit one of the most important dynamics at play within any business or organisation - the power of momentum. In short, fear can paralyse you and subsequently your business.
They say there are two kinds of people; those who see the glass half-full and those who see the glass as half-empty. If your glass is half-empty you'll take a look around and see threats. If your glass is half-full on the other hand you may look at exactly the same data and spot opportunities.
If you read any management book about this kind of thing they will spout the virtues of the 'half-full' mindset and warn you about the dangers or disadvantages of being 'half-empty'.
We celebrate the positive thinker and without any thought we attach this trait to the architype of 'entrepreneur'. Yes, he or she is a go getter, a high achiever a creative and positive thinker with a 'possibility' mindset, a mover and a shaker and will seemingly allow nothing short of a global catastrophe to get in their way, BUT that's not the full picture.
If you are the kind of person who looks around and can see nothing but opportunities, then let me give you a little health warning.
Having too many opportunities can bring you to exactly the same position as focusing in on your fears. It can bring your business to an untimely halt or even stop you from ever getting a business idea or development off the ground in the first place.
Management writer Seth Godin calls this 'The Paralysis of Unlimited Opportunity'.
Think about the last time you decided to exploit an opportunity. After allowing yourself to get immersed in the development of the concept (something initiated completely in the mind and done almost without lifting a finger), what has been your next step?
You may choose to:
Once you have your business case and you are confident with how you think your development should look then you set about the next stage. You might:
And the process continues until you eventually and hopefully get your product, service or idea to market.
So what's all this got to do with 'The Paralysis of Opportunity'?
For every opportunity you see and decide to exploit there are many practical implications. There are resources to attract, people to find, premises to source, markets to reach, plans to draw up, not to mention the actual production and delivery of the product itself. It's a complex business.
If your mind is full of nothing but opportunity without considering the practical implications of what that means you will end up doing absolutely nothing about those opportunities. You get an acute case of what you might call 'positive paralysis by analysis'. Except of course there's nothing positive about it because nothing positive ever comes of it.