Business is about Motion
One of my favorite business books over the past few years was Get Lucky: How to Put Planned Serendipity to Work for You and Your Business, which was written by the co-founders of Get Satisfaction. Get Lucky shows businesses (and people) how to succeed by fostering the conditions for serendipity to occur early and often. One of the principles in the book is “Motion”, the skill of putting yourself in unfamiliar situations, but within familiar environments, in order to engage with previously unfamiliar people and ideas that are connected to your job, your projects, or your interests.
This concept of Motion has been at the center of how I approach my professional life. In fact, it is one of the reasons I often start my day in a coffee shop. If there is one constant in the business world, it is being busy. We all have our heads down with a ton on our plates. That can make “motion” difficult unless you are very intentional about it. You have to force yourself into the behavior, recognizing that the short term effort will result in long term reward.
I experienced this first hand over the last several months with one of our clients at Rockfish. The engagement was all around innovation and startups that were innovating in a particular industry. These startups are in a “hot space” and as a result, they had a lot of BigCo’s knocking on their door. That made it tough to get an audience with their founders. After all, if they took every meeting with a BigCo that reached out, they would spend their time in meetings instead of building the business. But this is where Motion came into play. Looking at our list of Startups that we wanted to meet with, there were common connections that could be leveraged. In one case, the lead investor was someone I had met through The Brandery. In another, a founder was someone I had met randomly at a conference and kept in touch with. By putting myself in these different situations in the past, I had built bridges that I could now use.
If you are looking to get a leg up in your own career, definitely pick up Get Lucky and see how Planned Serendipity can make a difference for you.