Work With Lucky People

February 06, 20211 min read

Photo by Guillermo Velarde on Unsplash

There is a joke that goes:

When hiring, throw away 50% of the CVs without even reading them. You don't want to hire unlucky people.

Tony Hsieh of Zappos famously insisted on hiring lucky people. He would literally ask applicants "how lucky are you".

Belief in luck is a self-fulfilling prophecy

In poker, I have seen many players who believe they are unlucky, and because of such belief, they play fearfully and irrationally - in situations where they are likely ahead 70% of the times, these "unlucky" players keep thinking about the other 30% of the times they might be behind, and hence miss out a chance to make a +EV bet.

When starting a new business venture, an "unlucky" person will start treating every challenge and roadblock as a sign from the universe that he will not succeed. And this would become a self-fulfilling prophecy as he feels more victimised, becomes less open to new possibilities, and eventually starts giving up and failing the business.

Work with "lucky" people

The thing about luck is no one knows for sure if they are lucky or unlucky. What matters is whether you believe you are lucky. You can't control luck, but you can control not feeling victimised, not feeling that the universe is against you.

In business, you want to work with "lucky" people, whether they are your cofounders, your employees, or even your boss - people who work hard, put themselves out there, and capitalise on opportunities because they fancy their chances and believe good things will happen to them.

Another way to look at it is, two people might experience the same luck and challenges, but the more "lucky" one will keep going and take actions while the "unlucky" one will sulk and blame luck and circumstances.

P.S. You can read more here on Naval's theory on four kinds of lucks and how to make luck your destiny.

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