On finding opportunities

We all need a lucky break…

Yet often we are blinded to the lucky breaks right in front of our eyes because they are dressed differently from what we expect them to be dressed as…

A couple of months ago I spoke to 13.000 men for 45 minutes on the future of work and specifically why entrepreneurship isn’t an option but rather is their future. I will share detailed notes next week. But the one story that resonated strongly with the audience was this one – and I’m sharing it in the hope it opens your eyes as well.

There is a story often told in Churches about the river embankment that burst forcing the man on his roof to save himself from the rising waters. A man rowing a small frail boat full of holes comes along and offers to rescue the man. The man declines as he waits for a better boat. Another vessel arrives, this one full of people that make the man wonder about the stability of the boat. Again the man declines. As the water level rises another boat arrives, this one also nothing special, long and very narrow, with the captain of the boat asking him to come on board and help him row to shore – and again the man declines. Finally, the water overwhelms the man and he enters heaven where he meets God and asks him why he didn’t come to save him. God replies “I sent you many a vessels but you turned them away”

The moral of the story for entrepreneurs is this: we are constantly being shown opportunities all around us yet we turn them away because they don’t look attractive enough, comfortable enough (especially against the warm comfy house we are leaving behind) or too much work. We spend our life’s complaining about not being given a fair chance to prove ourselves and to become the exceptional human beings we should become when all around us millions of opportunities, just camouflaged as hard unglamorous work.

In the talk I showed 4 examples of opportunities around us that we take for granted (source: GG Alcock’s amazing book Kasi economic Revolution): the lady sitting on the pavement selling food outside the schools: over 200.000 of them in SA with 25% of them taking home ca. R 6.500 net profits a month. Or the informal grocer working from what appears to be a tiny shack turning over 45.000 a month.

Opportunities are never pretty or glamorous when they first present themselves. The question is if you are going to judge them by their looks or are you going to see these as a door that is opening for your new future?



About York Zucchi:

In a career spanning 27 years across over 11 countries, creating projects & businesses that have impacted people’s lives in over 83 countries, York Zucchi considers himself one of the luckiest people: doing what he loves most, which is making a difference in the lives of startups, entrepreneurs and SMEs everywhere.

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