One of the best gifts from the stoics is the quote by Seneca:
“Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.”
We often see people around us that are just too lucky, they get opportunities like no other and it just doesn’t seems fair, what we don’t see is that generally, these people have an engineering approach to what would seem as an act of destiny. I stumbled upon a chapter in Keith Ferrazzi’s book ¨Never Eat Alone¨ today; I’ve talked about this book before since to me it’s not only the networking bible but also the relationship one. In this chapter called Engineering Serendipity, Ferrazzi talks about how successful people manipulate their own luck so when the right opportunity shows up, they can take advantage of it, increasing the probability of one of these luck encounters sky-rocketing their career in the greatest way possible.
So, How do people create luck or serendipity?, well first, they make sure to develop skills, important ones that would make them valuable in the field they want to grow in, but this is the bare minimum, there’s thousands of people with your skill level out there if not better but unless there’s an opportunity of exposure, these skills and preparation are useless. The second really important thing they do is they create the chance for luck, they constantly put themselves in circumstances that will make it more likely for the events to happen, they seek places that will likely put them close to the people they would like to meet by ¨chance¨ and they’re constantly shifting environments, leaving the places you frequent is crucial for these events to happen as the places you most frequent are the same places the same people frequent the most.
Finally, they take action, they dress to impress and they’re always prepared treating everyday as their lucky day so when life throws a ball at them, they can hit a home run.