Some people just seem to attract good luck… are you one of them? People who are lucky in their career are those who are asked to participate in the most interesting projects, are in the right place at the right time to take advantage of an incredible one off opportunity or are promoted without even applying for the role.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard women say to me “I’ve had a lot of luck throughout my career.”
But is this luck at play or is it something else?
I used to think that my career had been built on a fare bit of luck. Every couple of years I landed a new role as a result of corporate restructures. Each role built on the last allowing me to step into more senior roles with more responsibility without really having to do much to get them.
But now as I look back at that time, I realise that my career progression had more to do with hard work, raising my profile and my readiness to seize the opportunities as they came along.
So before you say you have been “lucky,” pause for a moment and really ask yourself “was it luck or good management?”
I suspect it was both.
I don’t believe luck happens in isolation.
Luck is the intersection of hard work and opportunity.
Luck = hard work + opportunity
So is it possible to increase our luck quotient? I believe it is!
If you are in the market for a promotion, pay rise or a new position this year, let’s start right now to increase your chance of “luck” playing a role in your career progression.
5 steps to create the foundations to building your career through attracting more good “luck”
1. Create clarity. For luck to play a part you have to know what you want.
You will not see the opportunities that are in front of you if you don’t know that’s what you want.
Likewise, your network can’t support your progression and clear the pathway for you while you remain confused and without direction.
This is the most important step towards creating luck. If you are unsure and lack this clarity then Career by Design, a one day workshop for mid career women may be a great starting point.
2. Do great work. This may be obvious but it still needs to be said. You have to do great work for the opportunities to come your way. You will not get offered a promotion or to lead an exciting project if you’re not doing great work.
So even if you have lost the motivation and dedication to the role you are currently in … it’s time to find a way to re-engage and demonstrate the value you bring to your role and the organisation.
3. Focus on what matters. We only have so much time in each day, so focusing our time and energy on work that matters both to you and the organisation you work for is key.
If progressing your career is high on your agenda this year, map out time in your schedule each week that will get you one step closer to this.
This might mean prioritizing working on a project that will get you recognised for a particular skill or creating time to reconnect with your boarder network.
4. Raise your visibility. Luck can not come your way if you remain unknown and invisible! A key to luck is creating a strong professional reputation with people with influence – both internally and externally.
Seek out opportunities to participate in high profile projects that will allow you to demonstrate your skills. Speak up in meetings, focusing on allowing others to see the key skills you want to be known for.
And remember relationships are everything. People who experience a lot of luck tend to be people who have developed genuine relationships with people who have influence. Make sure you are one of those people.
5. Be open to opportunity. I believe that opportunities are always all around us… we just need to be open and on the look out for them. Once we decide what we want and start taking action towards that goal, the universe seems to conspire with us to present us with the right opportunities. But the opportunities will only appear once we have clarity and start taking action.
Relying on luck alone is NOT a smart career building move, but by following these steps you can engineer more luck to come your way.
So… what action will you commit to today to open up the opportunities to luck?