While at IT Nation, I got a chance to hear Jim Collins speak (thank you, ConnectWise). It was such a great experience. I found myself taking notes and tweeting most of the time. While looking back at some of my notes, I remember a phrase that stood out the most to me: Return on Luck. We have ROI and ROR (see one of my later blogs for more on this) and now ROL, but is there a way to measure the amount of luck one gets? No; that’s the simple answer. However, when diving deep into what Jim Collins was talking about, we get a clearer picture.

 “We are able to define luck to quantify it and then to systematically analyze the role of luck. What we find is, there is a lot of luck, both good and bad.”
~Jim Collins

When we boil this down, it comes to being at the right place at the right time…after all, that IS what luck truly is, right? It’s more than just that; it is taking the opportunities that are presented to you (both good and bad) and getting the most out of them. You need to take what is given to you and see how you can take that opportunity and run with it. Collins used Bill Gates as an example; he wasn’t brilliant by any means—there were plenty of other people at the time who could do what he did and even some could do it better than Gates. What set him apart is that he saw an opportunity, dropped out of college, and moved to New Mexico in search of his dream. He saw an opportunity and went farther than anyone else. Luck is more of a state of mind than anything else; you have to see the glass as half full as opposed to half empty. The best entrepreneurs can see something negative and change it to something positive. Now, on the flip side, if you see a great opportunity and do nothing about it, would you then say you’re unlucky? No. You had some “luck,” you just decided not to act on it.

Advantages will come and go, but it’s a matter of what we do with them when we see them. As small business owners and as entrepreneurs, there is always a bit of “luck” that is on your side when starting your own business. The thing that sets you apart is what you do with the bit of luck that you get. Take every opportunity and maximize it! Remember, luck is more of a state of mind mixed with motivation.

The formula is simple: ROL = Opportunity + Action