The legendary chemist and microbiologist Louis Pasteur once said, “Chance favors the prepared mind.” When I think about my career over the past 20-plus years, I recognize many times when indeed luck or chance seemed to come my way. Interestingly enough, opportunities seemed to appear when I was most prepared to accept these challenges.

How does being prepared for opportunities truly help a business owner succeed? 
The Product Development & Management Assn. conducted a study to evaluate the relationship between clarity of ideas and success and found that low clarity resulted in 23% of businesses achieving success while a whopping 85% of businesses achieved success when they were very clear and articulate about their goals and ideas. When you give words to your ideas and vision, they have a significantly higher chance of becoming reality.

Articulating your goals is clearly a method of preparing your mind and your company for opportunity. Therefore, today’s tip is simple: Write down your top three business goals for the next six months. Do it right now—before you have the chance to get involved with some part of your business that is calling you. Once you have these goals written down, post them in your office or a place where you will see them every day to remind yourself why you’re getting up each morning and going to work (even if that’s just down the hall in your bunny slippers).

Beth Goldstein, President, Marketing Edge Consulting Group, Boston MA

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