Definition: finding valuable or agreeable things not sought for
Last weekend, I asked my family a question: “what is your favourite word?”
My wife had 3 favourites. One of those words is “serendipity”.
Side note: My 6 year old had one favourite word. “Love”. She is a genius IMHO.
This week several events occurred where I found that the word serendipity was the clearest expression of how the important people and important opportunities have come into my life.
I’m on the train to Madrid this morning, and stopped to reflect on why this word came up and why it is so relevant.
What is the difference between serendipity and luck?
…from the Merriam Webster dictionary
“There is considerable similarity between luck and serendipity, but there are also settings in which one word might be more apt than the other. Serendipity has a fairly narrow meaning, one that is concerned with finding pleasing things that one had not been looking for, while luck has a somewhat broader range (with meanings such as “a force that brings good fortune or adversity,” “success,” and “the events or circumstances that operate for or against an individual”). One might easily be said to have luck that is bad, which one would not say of serendipity.”
I didn’t have it on my bucket list to do an MBA, it was someone else’s dream and they brought me along. Teaching was not something I ever imagined doing, and Brian Leggett opened that door for me. IESE now plays a huge part in my life and a huge contribution to my feeling of belonging in Spain, to contributing to society, and to developing my own reputation. Serendipity.
Vistage was not something I was looking for. I had no strategic plan that was looking for Vistage 10 years ago… I had a coffee with a friend, Verne Harnish, and he said “I think I have something for you”… and he gently pushed and encouraged me until I made a concerted effort to look at what the opportunity might mean for me. He did not just say “check this out.” He pushed me. I will always appreciate his encouragement.
EO was not something that I was looking for – I went to a lunch with a VC to get them to invest in my business… and Christopher invited me to a learning event… which led me to a 17 year participation as a member and a leader in EO.
How to Maximize Serendipity
Human relationships are the foundation of serendipity.
The more people that know who you are and what you stand for, the better.
Writing this blog and sharing my weekly youtube videos are my most powerful tools to let the world know what I stand for.
Publish content (blogs, podcasts, videos, articles) regularly. Don’t try to be an expert, publish what you are learning. Let people know what you are building, what is important to you, what sort of future you are looking to create.
People will discover you. They get a sense of what interests you. They become a global radar guidance system for you that raises your Serendipity Quotient.