We all hope to “get lucky.” Right? But what do we mean by “get lucky” and how does one benefit from “being lucky”?
Jim Collins, author of Good to Great and Great by Choice, says that the causes of luck could be “randomness or complexity or anything in between.” He defines a “luck event” as any event that meets three tests 1:
- it happens outside of your doing
- it has a potentially significant consequence - maybe good, maybe bad
- it is unpredictable
But the real key to getting a “return on luck” is what you do when a lucky event occurs:
- Does it cause you to change your plans?
- Do you grab it? or
- Do you run away from it?
According to Collins, great companies are not any luckier than other companies; the great companies just do a better job of capitalizing on the luck that comes their way.
1 FinancialExecutive, January/February 2012, p. 31