Is It Better to be Lucky or Smart?
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
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We have a friend who buy and sells businesses. He’s been very successful over the last thirteen years. He started out by buying a bunch of businesses for a small amount of money. A few years later, he sold those businesses for a large amount of money.
Then he did it all over again. He’s timed his activities so he buys when the market is low, and sells when it’s high.
So is he lucky or smart?
He says, “It’s better to be lucky than smart.”
3 lessons about luck and intelligence
#1 – You have to be smart in order to do well.
When you first look into a subject, it often appears rather simple. Then as you dig deeper, you start to see all the complexity. As you wade through it, you begin reducing it to its essence and you start to see it as simple again.
You go from simple with no complexity to simple with a full understanding of the complexity. That’s how you know you’ve mastered something. Our friend has mastered the craft of buying and selling businesses.
#2 – You have to remain humble.
You have to recognize that you’re not in control of everything. Luck enters the picture to some degree. The opposite of that is arrogance. Some people don’t realize, or won’t admit, that luck is involved.
They get cocky. They think the rules don’t apply to them. Things come easy for them so they think they will always come easy. They don’t have to “waste” time doing menial activities – the things that made them successful in the first place. The next thing you know, they face an unlucky turn of events!
#3 – Don’t push your luck.
Our friend says that “he leaves a lot of money on the table.” He often says, “I sold it too early.” But that’s why he’s been so “lucky” – he’s not greedy.
We have another friend who says,
“It’s okay to be stupid, if you’re not greedy.
And it’s okay to be greedy if you’re not stupid.
But if you’re stupid and greedy, look out!”
So is it better to be lucky or smart? We think you’re lucky to be smart – smart enough to know that luck plays into it, too!
Just for fun
Our friend Jake Novak sent us this list:
Jake’s Take – Top 5 signs that you’re unlucky!
#5 – You’ve been asked to lead the marching band in your local St. Patrick’s Day parade, but you play the cello!
#4 – Some people reach into their pant’s pockets and find loose change. You try to reach into your pockets and realize you’re not wearing pants!
#3 – Like everyone else this year, you get a lot of those automated campaign calls during dinner, but these recorded calls urge you NOT to vote for their candidate!
#2 – You’ve always been the first on the block to buy the coolest new electronic equipment, like 8-track tapes, the BetaMax, and HD-DVD!
#1 – When you go to the doctor, they ask you for your insurance card – your LIFE insurance card!
Instead of our usual BIGG quote, we’ll close with an Irish toast instead:
May you have all the happiness
and luck that life can hold—
And at the end of all your rainbows
may you find a pot of gold.
And hopefully, it’s not fool’s good!
Next time, we’ll discuss nine presentation tips to make you a star! Until then, here’s to your BIGG success!