Seattle Community

Sue Clement
Networking & Referral Expert, Speaker, Author
Vancouver, British Columbia Canada
Greatly helpful
out of 10
8 votes

How to Get Lucky in Business!

Discover 5 simple ideas on how to make your own luck in business.
Written Mar 17, 2011, read 3439 times since then.


One of my favorite sayings is "Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity."  Since it's Saint Patrick's Day today, I wish that quote had been by someone Irish, but it's in fact by Seneca, a Roman philosopher who lived in the first century AD. But since everyone can be Irish for a day today, why not make Seneca a temporary honorary Irishman too. 

So let's take a closer look at Seneca's quote and see what we can do to get lucky too, other than hunting down leprechauns, four-leaved clovers and checking for pots of gold at the end of rainbows. 

Here are 5 ideas to get you started....

1) Be prepared so that when you meet opportunity you'll get lucky: Your Audio Logo 

The first major ingredient to luck is preparation.  And for us, as business owners, preparation means having our perfect audio logo (or elevator pitch) ready to go no matter where we are.  Whether you're at a St. Patrick's Parade or at a networking breakfast, you should know what to say when someone asks you “what you do?” - and be able to say it in a compelling way that gets you noticed and remembered whether it’s in a conversation or a 30 or 60 seconds formal networking introduction.

 2) Be prepared, part two: Carry business cards wherever you go 

In addition to having your audio logo ready to go, also be sure to carry business cards everywhere you go. Yes, even jogging or walking the dog. Last fall I made a great connection while out with Darby my wire fox terrier and although the other person didn’t have a card, I did so the connection wasn’t lost and a new client was gained.  So just like the old American express commercial – never leave home without them.  Networking is about making connections and you just never know when or how it will happen. 

3) Be where opportunity has a chance to find you: Get out there 

The second key ingredient of luck is opportunity. Be sure to spend time in places where opportunity can happen.  One thing it needs is other people.  You won't make a big splash and gather lots of new clients when you're home surfing the net or watching TV.  At least you won't unless you're watching yourself on Oprah, and your phone is about to ring off the hook.  In that case, staying home so you can answer it might be the perfect thing to do. 

4) Help opportunity along: Follow Up 

Giving opportunity a chance to put you in contact with people you can create a business relationship with is one thing.  But there's a second part that's just as important, and that's follow-up.  You see, opportunity lies not just in doing the right thing in the moment but also in what you make of it afterwards.  So once you have made the initial connection, be sure to call or otherwise get in touch with that new connection and do whatever follow-up is appropriate, including possibly suggesting lunch or coffee. 

5) Expect to be lucky 

Luck loves those who expect it.  Seriously.  There have even been research studies that have proven that expecting a good outcome will make it much more likely for good things to occur. You’ve probably heard the phrase – “you have to believe it to see it”. Whether it's the law of attraction, or whether it's something much more down-to-earth, it works. 

What down-to-earth thing could it be? Someone who expects a good outcome is much more likely to have a optimistic ‘can do’ attitude and act in a way that brings positive outcomes.  They'll be out there, creating opportunities for themselves, and making the most of them.  

They'll also be outgoing and positive when they meet people, which increases their likeability factor and makes those people drawn to connect with them.  And they won't flub their lines when it the time comes to talk about their business either. 

So Seneca certainly hit the nail on the head when he made that statement about luck happening when preparation meets opportunity.  But what do the Irish have to do with it?  

Well, the Irish have a reputation of being friendly and gregarious, and those are characteristics that can make anyone lucky, whether they're Irish by birth or whether they're "Irish" just for the day.  

And those characters work year-round, so be sure to use them, along with the other get-lucky tips.  In the meantime, if you're hoping to have more luck on Saint Patrick's Day, be sure to wear something green.  And a shamrock won't hurt either.

Check out this published work by Sue Clement
Insider Secrets to Referral Success

Learn more about the author, Sue Clement.

Comment on this article

Seattle, Washington 
    Posted by SUZANNA -, Seattle, Washington | Mar 31, 2011

    This is great, Sue. Thank you! Luck is such a major factor in success, and while we're accustomed to thinking of it as something intangible and not within our strategic control, your article reveals that this is not really the case. Fascinating!

  • Illustrator 
Bellingham, Washington 
Ellen Clark
    Posted by Ellen Clark, Bellingham, Washington | Mar 31, 2011

    I like this explanation. Simple, to the point, especially number 5 after all our thoughts dictate our outcomes and incomes.

  • public speaking consultant 
Weehawken, New Jersey 
katie karlovitz
    Posted by katie karlovitz, Weehawken, New Jersey | Mar 31, 2011

    Sue, you put it nicely...almost like the Boy Scouts "Be Prepared" but for business people. I love your term "audio logo!" Did you make that up? How we speak about our business is essential, but most people still sound canned and uncomfortable.

  • Photo Retoucher 
Evanston, Illinois 
Eric Basir
    Posted by Eric Basir, Evanston, Illinois | Mar 31, 2011

    You've successfully proven that luck comes to those who are most prepared.

  • Buying Agency 
Tirupur, Tamil Nadu India 
Michael G
    Posted by Michael G, Tirupur, Tamil Nadu India | Mar 31, 2011


    Can I Pray and belive God to get Lucky in Business?

  • Home Mortgage Consultant, NMSLR ID #442562 
Bainbridge Island, Washington 
Art  Lapin
    Posted by Art Lapin, Bainbridge Island, Washington | Mar 31, 2011

    Great article, Sue!

    It's every-day, common-sense stuff like this that is so easy to put into action that we take for granted sometimes.

    I believe we make our own luck through the 2 A's... Attitutude and Action, which you summed up so eloquently with your 5 "Luck of the Irish" Steps for Success on St. Patrick's Day.

    Thank you!

  • Process Server 
Gilbert, Arizona 
Greg Urroz
    Posted by Greg Urroz, Gilbert, Arizona | Mar 31, 2011

    Good reminder on the business cards. We often get so tied to this electronic world we live in and forget about the old traditional methods.

  • Design & Print Production 
Richmond Hill, Ontario Canada 
Randall LaRiviere
    Posted by Randall LaRiviere, Richmond Hill, Ontario Canada | Mar 31, 2011

    This article reminded me of another saying: "The harder I work, the luckier I become" I enjoyed your article Sue.

  • Entrepeneur 
Abuja, abuja Nigeria 
emmanuel Okiemute
    Posted by emmanuel Okiemute, Abuja, abuja Nigeria | Apr 01, 2011

    The article is mind blowing and every person who intend succeeding in business must put all this things into practice and possibly enlarge his coast.

  • Independent Consultant 
Dublin Ireland 
Majella O'Connor
    Posted by Majella O'Connor, Dublin Ireland | Apr 02, 2011

    Great post, I'm Irish and very proud of it but all of your points need to be shouted from the hill tops, they are so simple they are easily overlooked thanks

  • Networking & Referral Expert, Speaker, Author 
Vancouver, British Columbia Canada 
Sue Clement
    Posted by Sue Clement, Vancouver, British Columbia Canada | Apr 03, 2011

    Thanks all your your comments. Some of the simplist ideas are the ones we often overlook. Marketing isn't voodoo - although it can often feel like it! So when in doubt keep to the basics & you can't go wrong.

    And to answer Michael's question - praying can't hurt!

    As well, Russell -- "The harder I work, the luckier I become" Great quote, tks for sharing. And yes, I agree action is key to getting lucky!

  • Online Marketing Consultant & Copywriter 
Richmond, Virginia 
Elisabeth Kuhn
    Posted by Elisabeth Kuhn, Richmond, Virginia | Apr 06, 2011

    Love the article, Sue! It takes something that seems out of our control and puts us back in the drivers' seat!

    Very encouraging and inspiring. Thanks so much!