Too often we assume that those entrepreneurs who are more successful than us have had a more advantageous set of circumstances to ours, and we view them as lucky. I would agree that luck is an important aspect of successful entrepreneurship. The question is, do successful entrepreneurs generate their luck?
Firstly let’s look at what luck actually is. A well-known definition suggests the following: luck is when preparation meets opportunity. In entrepreneurship preparation is defined simply by how we manage the choices that lead towards, or away from, wealth generation.
In EnQ these types of choices are termed investment choices due to the nature of their long-term returns.
Those who choose immediate gratification, easy winnings, least effort and most comfortable, secure or popular options at any one time, often seem to find themselves in situations that offer very little choice in the longer term.
Those who make investment choices that tend to reduce immediate rewards often expand their long-term options. These ‘reduction’ choices require that they invest in current risk over short-term security. They may endure scorn – and even ridicule – rather than respect from those they admire or are deeply influenced by, such as parents, teachers and religious leaders.
Successful entrepreneurs have all made choices that, in their purest form, cost everything and promised nothing. But if and when they did pay off these investment choices were rewarded in the long term by financial security, respect and most significantly, freedom of lifestyle choice.
An important consideration regarding the immediate reduction variety of investment choices is that they only pay off when backed by vision, perseverance and zero entitlement thinking. And – they don’t always pay off, that is just the nature of the business.
The question we should be asking ourselves about our own business decisions is: Are we investing in the ability to exercise and expand our choices in the future, or are we making the easy choices now that will most likely constrict our longer term choices significantly?
How lucky we will become as entrepreneurs will be largely determined by our awareness of this variance.