The news about my boss, Andy, giving his two-week notice spread like wild fire in the department. Everyone who reported to him was apprehensive about what the next guy was going to be like.
Is the new guy going to be better or worse than Andy? Everybody was concerned about how this change would affect them, including other managers that worked with Andy.
Weeks later after Andy was gone, as I was working on the production floor, one of the technicians came up to me and said, “So I heard you have a new boss now.”
“Do I?” I inspected some plastic parts coming off a molding machine.
“You didn’t get the news yet? You and I will both be working for Shawn now,” he said as he scrunched up his face in discontent.
“Is is that bad?” I inquired.
“I don’t know how much you’ve worked with him, but he doesn’t deserve to be a manager,” he added, “The stars were lined up just right for him and the timing of it was right; that’s the only reason why he got to become a manager.”
Years later, I asked my audience at a speaking event: if they believed that everything, every single thing that they have in their life was because of their action. Some of them agreed, others did not.
Look at the above scenario. Andy made a clear conscious decision to quit and move somewhere else. So Andy created what he wanted through his action. However, Andy’s action also resulted in creating a vacant spot in the department. It’ll be foolish to say that Shawn intended that.
Did Shawn get the position because of his own action?
Some might argue that just like Andy, Shawn made a conscious decision of taking the position, so he created what he wanted through his action. Yes. But one intricate component of this scenario is that the decision made by one person (Andy) impacted what the other person (Shawn) got. That is referred to as destiny by some and opportunity by others.
Every one of us experiences this phenomenon in our personal relationships or professional careers at some point of time in our life. That relationship that you so deeply desired with someone, but it never worked out. The job or career that you so yearned for, but you ultimately ended up doing something that you had never dreamed of. Perhaps there is a component that we don’t have a control over: people and events both, which changes what we end up with.
No matter what you call it: destiny or opportunity, taking action is what ultimately makes destiny or opportunity a reality. Whether the result in what you expected or not—take action.