Luck Matters in Career Sucess More Than We Can Imagine , But We Can Create Our Own Luck

[Want to get automatic updates on ethel cofie’s blog post of Africa, technology, ecosystems and doing business in Africa sign up here ]


Often, in hushed coffee shop corners or echoing boardrooms, you might’ve heard someone argue that the pinnacle of career success is, in many ways, owed to luck. But before you mentally prepare your counter-argument, let’s explore this provocative thought a bit further.


“Your career success is majorly influenced by luck.” It’s a statement with weight, especially when it’s backed by a comprehensive study from the University of Copenhagen. Now, if you need more academic gravitas to this claim, let Robert Harris Frank, a distinguished economics professor at Cornell University, guide you. Frank, known for his economic insights in the New York Times, in his book “Success and Luck: Good Fortune and the Myth of Meritocracy”, unravels the intricate dance of fate and hard work in our professional journey.





Consider Sarah, an exceptionally talented data scientist. Fresh out of her Ph.D., she joined a tech startup which, two years down the line, skyrocketed because of an innovative AI product. This put her in leadership roles far sooner than many of her counterparts. Conversely, think of Alex, equally brilliant but having joined a well-established tech giant. He’s experienced incremental growth, in stark contrast to Sarah’s meteoric rise.


[Want to get automatic updates on ethel cofie’s blog post of Africa, technology, ecosystems and doing business in Africa sign up here ]

It isn’t that Sarah toiled more; it’s the undeniable serendipity of being at an opportune place when stars align. This isn’t an isolated incident. A Harvard Business Review study indicates that professionals in startups or emerging sectors often undergo rapid professional evolution, with a 60% higher chance of landing leadership roles prematurely.


Crafting Your Own Luck


But, if you’re fretting over your luck quotient, take a breath. While certain cosmic elements remain beyond human grasp, you have control over many others.


  1. Networking: A survey from LinkedIn highlights that 85% of all jobs are filled through networking. Hence, your next big break might just be a conversation away.
  2. Skill Enhancement: In today’s world, a multi-disciplinary approach is golden. It makes you a unique problem solver, setting you apart. Additionally, a **Forbes** study reveals that professionals who continually upskill have a 33% higher career satisfaction rate.
  3. Being Adaptive: Change is indeed the only constant. Embrace dynamic setups to unearth hidden gems of opportunities.
  4. Initiate and Innovate: Your innovative pitches, even if they don’t always see the light of day, solidify your reputation as an industry thinker.
  5. Brain Training: The science here is riveting. When focusing on a particular subject, like a red car, soon, they seem omnipresent. Such neural magic can be redirected towards career objectives.


In Closing


The next time you find yourself in the midst of the age-old debate of luck versus skill, remember it’s not binary. It’s about harnessing opportunities, aligning yourself in growth trajectories, and sometimes, just awaiting the universe’s nudge.


May your career be a harmonious blend of dedication, talent, and a sprinkle of serendipity!