I was once told that a wise man was not a man who knew everything, it was a man who knew where to find anything. At first I didn’t really care for that statement but as time goes on, I see that it is completely true.
Thinking about all of the skills I have developed over the last few years from business, management, marketing, web development and social media to name a few, my number one skill is knowing where to go to find out what I need to know. I taught myself most of what I know through necessity. In my last position at my old marketing firm, I started out knowing nothing and as each event and project came up, I would do some research and find out everything I needed to know to do a great job.
I would not consider myself an expert in any particular field but I am confident that I can always pull off expert results because whenever there is something I don’t know about, I know exactly where to go to find out everything i need to know.
Just yesterday I was visiting an organization where they were trying to set up a video conference with one of their supporters somewhere across the world. The A/V tech at the organization must have set something up wrong because the conference was working perfectly from the other side but on the organization’s side, the sound was not going through. The Tech refused to admit that the problem was on his side and continued to play around with all the wires. I offered to help but was told that he can handle it and didn’t need any help. I knew his assistant so I took him over on the side, opened a browser and typed in “troubleshoot” and the video conference system’s name into Google. The first result gave a list of things that should be checked if the sound was not working properly. At the end, it gave a phone number for support if all else failed. The answers were all there and it took me less than a minute to find them. The Tech gave up after an hour and a half and the conference was cancelled. He never ended up looking at the trouble shooting page.
Information changes, facts can change, best practices can change and nobody in the world can keep up with everything. The only skill that will keep you ahead of the game is to always know where to look for your answers. You too can get lucky just by knowing where to look. Besides, you will also be saving yourself a lot of time.
I am a typical person more or less that has always tried to get away with doing the absolute minimum to get by. In school, I did my assignments last minute, I barely passes some of my tests, I crammed for everything and didn't care about retaining any information. I always wanted to be successful and get lucky but my problem was that I thought that luck and chance were synonymous. One day, all that changed when i found out that there was more to "Luck". I learned that it was possible to make your own luck and that people that were "lucky", all had very similar characteristics. I made a conscious decision to become one of those lucky people and the world started to open up. It didn't happen overnight and I'm still not there yet but at least I know what to look for and what to do. Recognizing the opportunities to get lucky is only the beginning of the battle. Now I have to train myself to jump on every opportunity and one day be truly "lucky".
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