Do you believe in luck?
I enjoyed reading the book by Janice Kaplan titled “How Luck Happens”. It sparked so many interesting thoughts for me and the author describes how you can put yourself in situations so good luck will happen more frequently for you. Did you end up in Project Management by luck? If you are a successful project manager, should luck ever play a role in your projects? The dictionary describes luck as “things that happen to a person because of chance: the accidental way things happen without being planned. Good fortune. Good luck”.
I believe I ended up in Project Management by the phenomenon of luck. Leaders noticed my natural aptitude for organizing, and things that needed straightening up or shepherding kept landing on my desk. People would say “you should be a project manager”. This was the beginning of my awareness of project management. It was not a career I pursued or knew much about – rather I was discovered. Leadership took chances on me and projects continued to land on my desk until it became my career. If my skills had gone unnoticed or if leaders were hesitant to take chances on me, I would not be in project management today.
Should luck ever play a role in project management? One could argue there is no room for luck in project management – only solid planning and vigilant risk management, but let’s take a deeper look. Is it luck when a person with the unique skills needed for a project coincidentally applies for a job at your company and lands on your team? What about when the weather holds on a construction project and the project successfully completes before a terrible storm? Or, maybe by luck you find a magnificent mentor?
That happened for me - an interim CEO came to our local hospital and long story short he became a wonderful mentor for me. I learned so much and am eternally grateful for the time this very busy man took to help open my mind to new concepts and a deeper understanding of leadership. He assigned me homework, met with me on a regular basis and shared his years of knowledge and experience with me. Was this good luck or random chance? I believe it was good fortune – good luck for me. How about you? Do you see any luck when looking back at your journey? Going forward, look for luck and seize the opportunities that luck may bring your way!