Why Fear Is Your Ally in Business

Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox

Stay informed and join our daily newsletter now!
Entrepreneur Leadership Network Writer
Founder and CEO of WordSmithRapport
3 min read
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

In business, good decision making is critical to the bottom line. The challenge for every business professional, however, is that decisions of consequence summon fear.

But fear, although overwhelmingly characterized as a negative experience, is not all bad. When positioned as an adversary, fear frustrates progress. Yet, when recognized as an ally, it can offer incredible insight. Here’s the thing: How you decide to navigate fear will affect your success in business. Why not make it a powerful weapon in your arsenal?

Position fear as your ally and capture these three levels of insight:

Related: 5 Ways to Slay the Enemy of Entrepreneurs: Fear

1. Heightened awareness.

It’s true that the devil is in the details. But people often miss them. Distractions are everywhere. In the midst of chaos and confusion, however, fear sends this powerful message: Pay closer attention. If you submit, you are rewarded with new avenues of perception. With an expanded vision of what’s possible, you can literally and figuratively see things more clearly.

Solid decision making is inspired by heightened awareness. Heightened awareness arouses curiosity. It also encourages a businessperson to be proactive, connect the dots and develop new alternatives. Clearly, the ability to identify nuances is vital at every level in business. When you recognize fear as a delivery system for clear thinking and enhanced focus, you will capture an extraordinary opportunity to produce results at the highest level.

Related: It Turns Out, Fear is Your Best Friend

2. Strategic preparation.

The motivation to dig deep and prepare is fear's way of protecting you against failure. In business, the goal is always the same: success. Therefore, strategic behavior that ensures competency, competitive advantage and scalability is fundamental for every business professional. Preparation is simply par for the course.

Because complacency is a mind-set that wreaks havoc in business, fear reminds an individual that without taking critical steps to produce results, missteps and failure may be more likely than not. To avoid these negative outcomes, fear inspires a person to plan in advance, which then triggers confidence when results matter the most.

3. Manage the crisis.

By directing a person to fight or take flight, fear urges someone to confront paralysis. Fear’s tip-of-the-spear message for business professionals is: Think on your feet and take appropriate action when conflict occurs. Mastering this concept is critical, if not urgent, in successfully navigating every business transaction.

Highly charged scenarios can happen at a moment’s notice. Careless handling can negatively affect business relationships and cripple the bottom line. Are you prepared to handle crises when they occur?

Or will you shut down and become a casualty of fear? The choice is yours. Courage is simply taking action in spite of fear. Ernest Hemingway famously described it as “grace under pressure.” Got grace?

Business leaders take heed: Turn fear on its head and let “grace under pressure” be your guide. Elevate your commitment to excellence by taking action in spite of fear. Harness the power of heightened awareness. Prepare. Confront paralysis and reach for success with fear as your ally, one good decision at a time. Then watch your results soar.  

Related: How to Deal With the Fear of Being Unqualified

More from Entrepreneur
Entrepreneur Select: A Fund For Entrepreneurs, By Entrepreneurs

Entrepreneurs require more than just money, which is why we aim to empower you, as well as act as a catalyst for value creation.

Use code LEAD2021 through 4/10/21 to save on our collection of must-read leadership books, including:
  • Think Big, Act Bigger
  • Stress-Less Leadership
  • Dynamic Communication
  • And more
Make sure you’re covered for physical injuries or property damage at work by
  • Providing us with basic information about your business
  • Verifying details about your business with one of our specialists
  • Speaking with an agent who is specifically suited to insure your business

Latest on Entrepreneur