Executives universally pontificate on the need for new ideas and the virtues of risk taking. It is in the shareholders' interest for managers to take calculated risks when opportunities present themselves. Risk taking is the first and most essential step in all human progress. But how many companies actually encourage that sentiment or support it with incentives? Risk taking may be verbally encouraged, but in most firms the burden of risk is borne by individual employees, who cannot afford to bear it, and not by the organization, which can. And so many opportunities are left on the table.
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