Luck Happens When Preparation Meets Opportunity
August 30, 2021
Luck happens when preparation meets opportunity. This is one of my core life mantras and one that I seek to instill in my kids and my mentees.
You should always deal with life as if there is an opportunity waiting around the corner and be alert and prepared to capitalize on it. The more you go with this attitude and approach, the more you will experience the power of luck in your life. I can say some of the most significant breaks of my career have all been because of luck as I was prepared and ready, being at the right place, at the right time.
What does preparation look like? Here are three key elements that constitute good preparation.
Take Discretionary Action.
Whether you are a student, a leader, a consultant, an entrepreneur, or a salesperson- discretionary effort is that work one puts in above and beyond the minimum requirement to do the job. So if you are a student, the discretionary effort would be where you read material beyond what your curriculum prescribes. Similarly, if you are a salesperson making an effort to study psychology, learn a new language, or take an online negotiation course would count as a discretionary effort. Your discretionary effort will show up as value when you least expect it. For instance, you could encounter a sales situation where you get to converse with the decision-maker in his native language that you recently learned.
Create Content And Share With The World
There is enormous value in creating content of any sort that can add value to others. When you can create content and put it out for others to consume, it makes a fertile ground for others to connect and exchange ideas with you. The content you put out does not always have to be pathbreaking or original, but it must undoubtedly have one core ingredient. The content should have something of value that others can benefit from. It could be you sharing your experience or your viewpoint about something that resonates with others. When you start sharing your ideas with the broader community, you enhance your visibility and reputation as a person of value.
Meet And Connect With More People
When you connect with more people, particularly those unlike you and from diverse backgrounds, you increase the probability of luck showing up. However, one should be careful here. Meeting up with a few strangers on the sidelines of a seminar or a business event and exchanging business cards does not make for a connection. On the contrary, a connection between two people happens with mutual trust, respect, and common interest. The path to connecting with more people is easier if you are already active and visible within the community. Putting stuff out through blogs, vlogs, and social channels is a form of signaling that helps create trust and respect when interacting with someone.
The more discretionary effort you put in, the more content you put out, and the more people you connect with, the more surface area you have for serendipity and luck to manifest in your life.