Opportunity – Do You Hear It Calling?

By Laura L. Reeves, CCP

Founder & CEO of Common Sense Practice, LLC

I recently returned from a much needed vacation in the Georgia mountains.  I was visiting family at a sweet spot nestled in the foothills of the Smokies.  Every day was a new wonder of wildlife (deer, wild turkeys and crows!) beautiful sunrises, and neat local activities.

Having determined that all business (coaching and writing) was to be put on hold for this glorious time, I was amazed at how often those same relegated to the shelf business opportunities kept popping up.  And yes, I’m definitely a fan of the “luck is preparation meeting opportunity” school of thought.

I found a wonderful art gallery and gift shop and before I realized it I was connecting the owner with other regional artists and exchanging ideas about promotions and marketing! (And I bought some cool stuff too!)

So how did this happen?!  I refer to this as activating your opportunity chip.  Just like a microchip in your computer, your opportunity chip is constantly processing data without you being aware of it.  The savvy entrepreneur will dial into this data stream on a regular basis and access all kinds of opportunities to expand and innovate.

Here are 3 easy steps to activating your own opportunity chip:

 1)                 Intentional Awareness – Once you have a goal/objective in mind you need to keep that in a top of mind position so that opportunities that present themselves to you are immediately identified.  It’s like  buying a new car.  Once you’ve determined the make and model of the car you want, you begin to see that car everywhere on the road.  It’s not that there are suddenly more of those cars, it’s that you are aware and focused on the car you want. Staying aware is staying hungry.

2)                 Record It – Running a tab in my favorite watering hole means that I owe you compensation for delivering me my beverage of choice for the evening. I’ve stated publicly what my preferences are and I expect to get them during the transaction. For opportunity spotting this translates into keeping a list of potential opportunities you encounter, people connected with them, and steps you need to take to access those opportunities. Writing it down, capturing the information is critical to making the most of any opportunity. 

 3)                 Move It or Lose It – Just like starting an exercise program or buying your dream house, once you identify an opportunity you need to pounce on it, all claws extended, until you’ve brought it to heel or determined that it’s not the opportunity you want.  The smart entrepreneur lets go of the opportunities that don’t meet her requirements or needs but will never dismiss an opportunity out of hand without thoroughly examining it. Action is essential to maximizing opportunities.

So to hear opportunity calling ensure that you operate with intentional awareness and pay attention.  Keep score, make a list, but always record potential opportunities. And finally, jump on it!  Don’t let a great opportunity escape you because you didn’t move on it.  Every person, place, event, group, etc. is an opportunity incubator with numerous ideas about to hatch.  Enjoy the process and answer when opportunity calls!

Wait, I hear the mountains calling my name again…..is this my next opportunity?!