When opportunity knocks, should you open the door? Most people would say, “Absolutely, take every opportunity that comes.” But in my role as a higher education administrator, I often caution students to take the time to measure an opportunity before going for it, because every opportunity presented to you may not be right for you.
There are three steps in measuring opportunity:
Numero Uno! Be crystal clear about your goal
Knowing where you want to go is crucial. I don’t mean just having a cursory idea about where you want to end up, but a clear, precise vision of who and where you want to be five, ten and twenty years from now. For example, let’s say you want to own your own business, you would need to break that idea down into a workable vision.
Numero dos! Measure each opportunity against your goal
Once you have your goal broken down into a clear, concise, and deniable goal, when an opportunity comes along, measure it against your vision. Ask yourself an important question: How does this opportunity take me closer to my goal? If needed, take time to write out the benefits of taking the opportunity. There should be several clear, concise benefits from the opportunity that DIRECTLY takes you closer to your ultimate goal.
Numero tres! Don’t be afraid to say no to an opportunity
Saying no to an opportunity is not easy, especially when there are tangible benefits such as money attached. Many students I work with often use money as a measure of the viability of an opportunity, however, in truth, the skills that can be gained from the right opportunity are worth their weight in gold.
Following these steps can help one make better decisions when assessing the viability of an opportunity. So remember, just because there is an opportunity right in front of you, doesn’t mean it is the right opportunity for you.
Until next time!