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What Do You Do With Luck?

By Kevin Mogavero

My good friend Randy Watterson sent me this article, What’s Luck Got to do with it? by Jim Collins.

In the article, Jim talks about the difference between a 1 or 2Xer (a person who meets or doubles the industry standard of success) and a 10Xer (a person who is able to obtain 10 X the industry standard).

What he describes is a leader’s ability to capitalize on your ROL, Return On Luck!


Yeah, you know, luck, the stuff you didn’t really plan for, that shows up in your life.

There is good luck and bad luck.

Great leaders and Warriors are able to get a great return on luck in either case.

When a great opportunity comes your way, are you a “Zoomer,” as Seth Godin describes in his book Small is the New Big?

Do you default to “yes” when an opportunity presents itself, as Guy Kawasaki describes in his new book Enchantment?

In their own ways, they are talking about your ability to change.

To some, change is a threat.

To others, change is just business as usual.

You really aren’t all that special.

Just like everyone else, you will experience change and luck; the question is, what will your return on the experience be?

There are amazing stories of people who had “good luck” and capitalized on it, and then the rest who have had “good luck” and let the opportunity pass.

There are amazing stories of people who have had “bad luck” and were able to turn it around and capitalize on it anyway.

And then there are the rest who have had “bad luck” and used it as an excuse.

There are great examples of both in Jim’s Article.

On the other hand… you have people like David Heinemeier Hansson and Timothy Farris, two very successful people who give advice from the extreme opposite point of view.

They say you should make your default answer “NO.”

So, how can this be?

Two groups of wildly successful business people giving the opposite advice on the same topic.

Well, the conclusion of Jim’s article sums it up very nicely…

“After finishing our luck analysis for “Great by Choice,” we realized that getting a high ROL required a new mental muscle.

“There are smart decisions and wise decisions.

“And one form of wisdom is the ability to judge when to let luck disrupt our plans.

“Not all time in life is equal.

“The question is, when the unequal moment comes, do you recognize it, or just let it slip?

“But, just as important, do you have the fanatic, obsessive discipline to keep marching, to push the opportunity to the extreme, to make the most of the chances you’re given?”

Of course, the Warriors who are reading this do!


Kevin Mogavero is a co-founder of “Six Degrees of Leadership,” a personal development company that empowers people to live their purpose and passion by building “Social Capital.”

A graduate of West Point Academy, Kevin served six years as an officer in the U.S. Army Field Artillery. He held a combat arms leadership role for his entire career, except one staff position, during which he obtained a Master’s Degree in Leadership and Management. He also served in Iraq during “Operation Iraqi Freedom.” Since the military, Kevin has worked for Honeywell as an earned-value analyst in the aerospace department, in Phoenix Arizona.

He started testing his leadership skills in the entrepreneurial world by starting several companies, to include a real estate company and a business mailing-address company. Kevin loves to serve people who have a yearning to create a better life for themselves and others. He is passionate about teaching people the importance of something that most take for granted: relationships.

Kevin lives in Phoenix with his wife and two daughters. Read and subscribe to Kevin’s Warrior Blog here.

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