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Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Risk Is an Intergral part of Business and Life

When our family (led by my Father) decided, last Fall 2011, that we would build a dredge and go mining in the Bering Sea, it was a matter of intelligent risk taking.  Let me explain... My Father is a cautious man.  But, he has also been known to take a few risks along the way.  In doing so, he has indeed lived a more colorful life for it.  He grabbed the reigns early on in his career, and has continued to be the master of his own destiny.

Short term thinking and risk aversion dominate this planet.  Fear of the unknown is too powerful for most, and the thought of taking a risk (like leaving a career to build a dredge and gold mine in Nome, Alaska) produces overwhelming anxiety (understandably so).  Making more money in the short term is what people relate to.  Instead of giving oneself permission to work hard toward a dream (having little to show for it at first), but holding on to that positive long term outlook.

The key to intelligent risk taking is to look far enough ahead.  What difference will this decision make over the next 5, 10 or 20 years?  Over that timespan even small changes that are made can create a huge long term payoff.  And the decision to do nothing today means you're automatically denying yourself any long term benefits.  Doing nothing isn't just neutral.  Doing nothing is way, way negative.

Don't get me wrong.  All risks are not equal.  The word risk implies danger, tension and possible loss.  But, risk also has a positive side; the chance of getting more on the back side than you invest up front. Some risks are just plain dumb (like selling all you have to ice dive for gold in the Bering Sea).  That scenario is too fraught with problems, and is especially life threatening.   

The short term may be a struggle, and often a painful one.  On our journey with Goldenrod we have had to deal with disappointments again and again, as constant repairs or revisions have been necessary.  But, we are not discouraged, as we realize that in the long term our dream of finding gold will be realized.  So, our team plows through the failures as fast as possible.  It's like a conveyor belt; there's a new success on that belt somewhere ahead, and the faster the belt moves, the sooner it will arrive.

Tommy arrived back in Nome this past Saturday, August 25th.  It took him well over 24 hours, as his flight was delayed due to heavy overcast conditions and construction of one of the airstrips in Nome.  When he landed, he hit the ground running.  The sluice boxes are now rebuilt and ready for mining.  And, the new cameras installed.  Goldenrod is primed to dredge.  The weather has cleared (for now).  Just awaiting calmer seas in a day or so.  The gold is there, we just have to find it!  The courage, persistence and enthusiasm of our team will eventually produce huge gains.  We hope.  

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