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Profiles of Risk: Austin, Texas Quits its Job

In March, I was in Austin for the SxSW festival where everyone on the entire Internet convenes for a few days to say hello to the avatars they’ve come to know online and listen to a bunch of boring people talk about boring Internet stuff.

I skipped the boring part, but had a blast meeting fun and interesting people from all around the digital world.

On my last day there, I wandered around town to collect a few interviews for the new Profiles of Risk video series where I quiz people on two very difficult questions:

  • What’s the biggest risk you’ve ever taken, and
  • What would you attempt if you knew you couldn’t fail?

Rather than collect a lot of short answers like I did in Portland, this time around I decided to interview fewer people, but let them talk as long as they liked about the risks in their lives.

I don’t know if there’s something in the air in Austin, but almost everyone I talked to either had a story about becoming an entrepreneur or had a story about wanting to become one.

I find that fascinating and, honestly, quite telling. If half of the interviewees quit their jobs, and the other half want to, I think that says something about our inherent desire to spend our time doing personally meaningful work and says even more about the true amount of risk involved in doing so. Perhaps it’s not as bad as we sometimes make it out to be.

Here’s the video of Austin. I hope you learn and enjoy:

What’s your take? What do you make of Austin’s answers? Let me know in the comments.