Did you know that the leap year custom of women asking men to marry them goes back to 1288? I don’t know why the addition of one extra day in the year emboldened women to take the upper hand regarding matrimony, but that’s the tradition or so it was.

We’ve come a long way since 1288 in giving women license to have more control over their destiny. So too, leap year today has a broader meaning in the context of taking a risk with your life. Risk taking is a very personal thing but in general it involves getting out of your comfort zone; how far is up to the individual.

Anyone in business understands what it means to take a risk. When I first went into business I felt as if I was jumping off a cliff. That first leap into setting up your own business is just one of many risks you take. Keeping your business on track, adjusting to the shifts in the economy, trying to outpace the competition all requires hard work, focus and just plain taking risks.

The real challenge is to continue to push yourself to take risks when things seem to be on an even keel. We all know that nothing stays the same so as a business owner you need to constantly think about how to stay ahead. That more than likely involves taking a risk whether it’s expanding your business and offering new services, learning new skills or partnering with someone to offer an integrated service.

Over the years at BIOTONE, we expanded into new markets and repeatedly tried formulations and ingredients that had never been used before. When we introduced Dual Purpose some 25 years ago, it certainly was a risk. Even now our just announced True Balance Massage Gel includes Mango Butter. It’s an absolutely lovely ingredient, but it’s never been used before in our industry. You have to wonder why? It’s the nature of BIOTONE to keep pushing the envelope. That’s part of our culture.

So take advantage of leap year. if you haven’t already thought about some risk to get your business ahead or get you on new path that you want, you’ve still got the rest of the year to think about it. It seems to me that not taking a risk when you are in business is the biggest risk of all.