Tony Hsieh, CEO, Zappos.com

BE LUCKY.  I love this entry from Katie Couric’s book, The Best Advice I Ever Got.

Tony Hsieh is the guy who has doubled Zappos’ revenues every year, to over $1 billion in annual revenues today. At age 24, he sold one of his first companies – an advertising network called LinkExchange – to Microsoft for $265 millon. Then he co-founded an incubator and investment firm which funded start-ups like AskJeeves and OpenTable.

Hsieh knows something about luck. And he has an interesting way of describing the concept of luck in this post… not as some elusive and fickle force, but as an attitude and readiness that all of us can possess.

From The Best Advice I Ever Got:

At Zappos, we try to hire the luckier job candidates. In fact, one of our interview questions is “On a scale from 1 to 10, how lucky are you in life?”

Many years ago, I read about a study in which researchers posed that same question to a random group of people. Each participant was then handed a newspaper and asked to count the number of photos inside. What the participants didn’t know was that it was actually a fake newspaper. Sprinkled throughout were headlines such as, “If You’re Reading This, the Answer is 37. Collect $100.”

Researchers found that the participants who considered themselves unlucky in life generally never noticed the headlines. They diligently completed the assigned task and eventually came up with the answer. But the people who considered themselves lucky in life? They generally stopped early and made an extra $100.

The takeaway here is not so much about being inherently lucky or unlucky in life. Rather, luck is more about being open to opportunities beyond how the task or situation presents itself.

So try to be more creative, more adventurous, and more open-minded as you go about your life. Try to notice opportunities in disguise. Try to think more outside the box.

In short?

Be lucky.

Check out Hsieh’s book: Delivering Happiness


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