Jackie Jarvis, Heart of business Business Mentor, Sales Growth Expert and author of the popular book Quick Wins in Sales and Marketing shares Quick Win number 19.
“Opportunities are everywhere for those who have the eyes to see them”
Having an Opportunity Radar is the ability to see or hear opportunities for yourself and for others, taking the appropriate actions to explore that opportunity and make something happen.
It is about shining the light and seeing what lies hidden in the darkness. An example could be hearing someone express a need or a problem, picking up on it, and exploring if you, or one of your contacts, could help.
In my experience, some people have a natural Opportunity Radar, seeing and hearing opportunities everywhere, whereas others seem to be blind to everything in front of them unless it directly affects themselves.
I have defined some of the characteristics and skills of those that who have a natural Opportunity Radar.
Someone who has it…
- Is open and curious
- Hears problems and wants to solve them
- Picks up on things they hear and see
- Is a good networker
- Is focused on others and wants to help
- Always follows up but is not pushy
Where are you on the Opportunity Radar scale? Rate yourself 1 to 10, 1 being the lowest and 10 the highest.
What is stopping or blocking your radar?
Having or developing an Opportunity Radar is a question of attitude. There is a certain mindset supported by a set of beliefs that, once engaged with, will ensure your radar is switched on.
Take a moment, and try to see the world through the filter of these beliefs – they may already be your beliefs, they are certainly mine.
- Helping people is a good thing
- Opportunities are everywhere
- I really believe in the value of what I have/can do for the right people who need it
- People get a lift when you help them or pass an opportunity their way
- The right people/situations come on your path for a reason; you just need to be aware and open when they do
- There is a potential opportunity in every situation – it’s just a matter of uncovering it
What opportunities do you want?
You are much more likely to see and attract opportunities to you if you have already defined the opportunities you desire.
Once you articulate what it is you want, it is as if you are making a request. You want something to happen. Things do have a habit of finding you when you ask for them clearly enough.
I have had many experiences with my mentoring clients who having completed their ideal target client definition found that they suddenly received a call or a referral for someone that fitted the bill exactly. It is not always that easy of course, but it definitely helps to be clear about the opportunities you want to find.
The same principle applies to seeking out opportunities for others. Help them to articulate clearly what it is they need, narrow it down if needs be to something precise, and then when that particular opportunity passes your radar, you will be in a position to help them.
This creates a virtuous circle – people love it when you have listened to their needs, and present them with a ready-made solution, making it far more likely that they will return the favour.
Alison runs an accountancy and book-keeping business and is a member of my Quick Wins Success Group. I ran a session on developing an Opportunity Radar, as I wanted to help the group see more opportunities for both themselves and for others.
Alison loved the concept and really engaged with it. She realised that the mindset and beliefs that I had described were very close to how she naturally thought but had not been aware of this. This consciousness made a big difference to Alison – it was like switching on a light bulb in her head.
Working with Alison over a period of time, I noticed, not only, how many new client opportunities she seemed to be finding for herself each month, but how many opportunities she was also seeing for others in the group. She always seemed to be suggesting something for someone. She even went out to her local networking group and gave a talk on the subject.
She now has her Opportunity Radar firmly switched on.
- Define what opportunities you want
- Switch your opportunity radar on and see what happens
Opportunity Radar is something that we encourage our Heart of business members to have for themselves and for each other. It is one of the reasons our Network of like-minded business professionals works so well.
If you are interested in exploring if Heart of business could work for you, please come along to one of our meetings as a guest.