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3 Incredibly Simple Ways to Maximize Return on Luck to Grow Your Career Success

Return On Luck

Image courtesy of Flickr user Sam Howitz

There are some people who just seem to always be lucky. They’re always in the right place at the right time. They always get more than expected. They always pay less than the rest of us. Or so it seems. The fact of the matter is, they have figured out how to maximize their Return On Luck (ROL), a term being popularized by Jim Collins in his book Great By Choice. But how do they do it? The reality is, luck is simply being prepared to seize opportunities when they’re presented. Luck, good or bad, is an outcome from a series of habits. To increase your chances of being luckier simply requires you to adopt 3 practices – aka habits – that will allow you to seize opportunities when they are presented.

Habit #1: Build A Luck Network

Luck, good or bad, starts with the people you’ve allowed into your inner circle because they collectively define what you consider “normal”. Examine your closest relationships. It’s strictly a numbers game – to increase your good luck, increase the number of people who are seemingly lucky – this is code for “successful”. Here are two killer strategies that will propel your success and increase your ROL:

1) Take on a leadership role in professional associations and non-profit organizations. I started doing this back in 1997, and it is absolutely amazing how contributions to a variety of organizations has and continues to open doors to new and unexpected business opportunities.

2) Crowdsource your ROL Using Social Media. I use Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to find and interact with people who can fill in gaps in my knowledge, skills, and abilities and so should you.

Habit #2: Look for Opportunities in Other Peoples’ Problems

Have you heard any complaints lately? Of course you have, and what you may not realize is every complaint is a gift because they represent potential opportunities to significantly increase your ROL. In fact, every product and service ever created was initially conceived from this supremely simple and incredibly effective ROL increasing strategy. The key is to know which complaints offer the greatest ROL possibility. And that’s easy to determine. Simply listen and observe others to identify trends and recurring themes. These represent unmet needs, and by identifying trends of unmet needs that multiple people are experiencing, you can devise solutions that will have people coming to you for more. It’s one of the easiest ways to dramatically increase your own ROL!

Habit #3: Create a Luck Investment Account

If you follow through on Habits #1 and #2, you will inevitably be exposed to lots of new opportunities. The biggest barrier that prevents people from seizing them lies in a lack of luck investment planning. It takes two key resources – money and time – to be able to execute on an effective ROL strategy. How can you do this when you’re already strapped for cash and overwhelmed with existing time sucking commitments? Easy. Don’t think in terms of constraints. Think in terms of opportunities. Creating a Luck Investment Account requires you to think of new ways to reallocate existing resources. When everyone else is sleeping, I’m doing research. My Luck Network (Habit #1) constantly makes me aware of free resources that keep me in the know about my customers’ pain points. Whenever people complain about work related issues, I listen very attentively. Every time my management consulting firm provides leadership training, we use a variety of activities to identify the biggest challenges facing leaders. By doing so, we are continuously developing solutions for the biggest leadership challenges. So as you can see, I’m very adept at getting much more value out of routine tasks that have to be completed to achieve success. You can too if you simply shift your thinking from one of constraint to one of opportunity.

By developing these three habits, you will experience a dramatic Return On Luck, and once people see you as successfully executing on opportunities, you’ll continue to be afforded new opportunities because you’ll have developed a reputation for improving other peoples’ lives. The key is to stop thinking inside the box, for that is too limiting. Don’t think outside the box, for that keeps you within range of limitations. Think like there is no box, for that frees you up to achieve the unachievable.

For more tips and strategies on thinking your way to success and increasing your Return On Luck, visit my website at, subscribe to this blog, and follow me on social media (Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Facebook). By doing so, you will gain access to leading edge research on management and leadership development and have access to daily inspirational and motivational quotes that will drive your success trajectory upward. So don’t delay, follow me and think yourself to success today!


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