Fear Is Our Friend

Fear Is Our Friend

Fear can be a great friend and our biggest weakness.

Last year I had an epiphany about leadership and capability. Since then I've shared the awareness in openings to keynote addresses and general conversation. It's not only struck a chord with me; it's resonated with many people.

Say, that I ask you to walk a tightrope ten stories high from one high rise building to the next. On the other side was a $10 million cash prize. Would you do it? Most will answer along the lines of “No way, I’ll die!"  Then we go to ground level, and I show you how to do the walk at a safe height with all instructions that build your capability and confidence.   Once you've had enough practice and feel comfortable, we go back up to the top of the same building. This time, you have capability and confidence.  I also give you a safety line so if you do fall you won't fall.  Will you do it now for $10 million? Most will answer yes.

What if you have an idea to start a business that is going to give you a return of $10 million. Will you take that opportunity?

When people take on a new venture or a promotion, often they don’t seek help and in making this choice put themselves at risk of failing due to a lack of capability.

Business is generally not life and death.  When a business venture starts to fail a state of fear can take over, driven by ego.  It’s the self-talk, "I can do this on my own. I don’t need any help".  It's the fear and indecision that will stall the growth of the business or the full implementation of an idea. The ego will find diversions and distractions so it doesn’t get found out - so it doesn’t have to address the real issues: self-awareness and capability.

The key here is the bigger the vision, the higher in a business you climb and the more aware and capable you need to be.  Personal development is essential. There’s no room for smoke and mirrors.

There are so many great tools available for us all to have increased awareness and improved capability to do our jobs and build successful businesses.  If we accept the safety lines, we can learn from mistakes and get back up on the tightrope. 

Inspiration from Philippe Petit’s high-wire walk between the towers of the World Trade Center in New York, 1974.


Tim Dwyer is a business growth expert, who specialises in helping businesses strategically grow their assets, increase their business value, and improve their capabilities. Tim would welcome the opportunity to share more with you about Growth Metrics for business. You can contact Tim, and read more of his business insights and advice via his profile and learn more about Growth Metrics here.

Connect with Tim on LinkedIn here.