Luck – Make it work for YOU!
Every entrepreneur has heard that success requires the right combination of skill, experience, timing, and luck. But that last, intangible piece of the formula has always been tricky. Over the past decade, some observers have begun to understand luck not as a random, uncontrollable phenomenon but more as a behaviour that happy, successful people employ, whether consciously or subconsciously.
The update comes courtesy of British psychologist Richard Wiseman, who studies lucky and unlucky people as part of his research as a professor of the public understanding of psychology at the University of Hertfordshire, UK. His goal is to isolate the traits that lucky people possess and demystify them so that everyone can emulate them.
So what exactly is luck and how does it apply to entrepreneurs?
People who consider themselves lucky have a way of dealing with chaos and complexity that unlucky people do not, Wiseman says. And chaos and complexity are two things in abundance in any startup business.
Lucky people, he says, are particularly good at noticing and capitalising on opportunities as they arise. They act on gut feelings and hunches, but only after honing their intuition.
Unlucky sorts, by contrast, tend to be narrowly focused and goal-oriented. If there are new opportunities that arise while they’re pursuing something else, they’re more likely to ignore them than to jump on them.
This ability to change gears, revamp business plans, and ditch ideas that aren’t working out is something that successful chief executive officers have described to me repeatedly over the years. Nearly every mature business owner has a story or two about how an original idea had to be revised or scrapped along the road to finding one that works. But rather than despairing or freezing when one model is proven wrong, these individuals quickly recalibrate and redirect their efforts.
Persistence in the face of failure long been associated with entrepreneurial success. The ability to scramble over a heap of past failures may be the biggest luck factor of all.
Are you making luck work for YOU?
Adapted from an article by Karen E Klein, Bloomberg.com
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