Archive for June, 2012
We’ve often been told we’re lucky to have our own business. But luck really has very little to do with it.
Here is a response made to a recent guest post at Man vs Debt, an inspiring blog by Adam Baker on his challenges of overcoming a big load of debt acquired at a relatively young age. Not unusual — you hear of the financial plight of young college grads all the time. But Baker decided to DO something about it (Sell Your Crap, and more…)
To keep on course, Baker even started a blog. Now, a couple of years later, he has built up a very successful business. His most recent adventure is creating a documentary (I’m Fine, Thanks.) My response follows:
- A little over 25 years ago, and just before jumping into full time consulting, my business partner was in a precarious position in his full time job. The layoffs were coming, and everyone knew it.
- For the previous several years, we had been moonlighting and developing a small engineering consulting business. By that time, we were both ripe for the jump anyway. One of his colleagues commented, “You’re lucky — you have something else you can do.” To which he replied, “Luck has nothing to do with it. I’ve worked long and hard to get into this position. If the ax falls today, my shingle will be out tomorrow.”
- As it turned out, I jumped first — the day the market crashed in 1987. Bad luck? No, we had laid enough plans and lined up enough clients to survive that fiasco (but emotionally, our FIRST day in business was probably the WORST day in business.) In fact, business was so good (and so much more fun) that within a couple of months we were both in full time practice.
- The lessons learned – planning and flexibility are much more important than “luck”. And twenty five years later we’re still at it. Not bragging — just offering some encouragement. You can create YOUR own luck!
One more piece of advice. If you are considering a JumpToConsulting, do something TODAY to move you in that direction. Doesn’t need to be a big step — even a tiny step counts. Then do something else tomorrow (or at least next week.)
Every journey starts with small steps that are repeated. I am repeatedly frustrated by those who tell me they are “thinking” about consulting (or any other venture) but who never even take that critical first step.
So go create your own luck! You can do it…
P.S. - Been a little lax on posting here. We recently moved/downsized and it has been a big effort. Now getting resettled, and looking forward to getting back to normal – whatever that is.
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