What kind of Risk Taker are you?

Risk Taker Category Survey

This exercise is designed to “force rank” your self-perceived attributes. You can only answer with the same number a maximum of THREE (3) times.

Not at All Like Me Not Much Like Me Somewhat Like Me Very Much Like me Most Like Me
I’m driven by making a dent in the universe
I love taking risks
I’ve been through many tough things, but I always find a way to keep going
I have a strong desire for independence
I value meaningful engagement in the world
Serving others is a powerful motivator for me
It’s important to me to be on a team where everyone wins or loses together
I’m willing to put my reputation at risk for a bigger purpose
I can’t stand the day-to-day grind of big organizations
I expect to encounter obstacles and setbacks
When I fail at something, I just move on to what’s next
I work from a vision of the world as it should be

Here are your primary and secondary risk categories!



Idealists are driven to make a “dent in the universe,” as Steve Jobs famously said. They have a vision of how the world should be, they understand the world is not as it should be, and they believe they can close that gap to make that dent. Their risk is about making that vision happen. Often, they start by trying to change the world from inside an organization but become frustrated by the challenges. Their intense desire to make the world better, in big and small ways, motivates them to make the leap.


Several risk-takers were primarily driven by adventure, almost like risk-junkies. These Adventurers take on multiple risks over a lifetime and move quickly from one situation to the next. Their purpose seems to be the adventure itself, and they tend not to be introspective. They are too busy seeking out adventure to spend much time looking back or inward. They typically respond to failure, even catastrophic ones, simply by seeking the next adventure.


Some risk-takers take big risks to escape the day-to-day grind of corporate life, to be their own boss, for the chance to live their own dream. These folks are motivated by avoiding the bureaucracy and depersonalization of corporate life. They have an overwhelming desire for independence. They frequently discover other motivations once they leap into their own venture. They are essentially solo practitioners.


Several risk-takers experienced an incredibly challenging life event. Often, an event that would crush someone else or at least cause them to seek safe harbor. Instead, these individuals made a huge leap designed to improve their lives and the world in the process.


We encountered those who accomplished significant financial success, only to discover that—money aside—they were no more fulfilled. This led to deeper searches for meaningful engagement in the world. They took significant risks in their search for meaning, including letting go of established reputations and valued relationships that became obstacles to their search.


Serving others can be a powerful motivator. Sometimes profound experiences in early life, even tragedies, shaped the life mission of risk-takers to serve others. Many risk-takers find that after material needs are met, their meaning manifests as a Giver.