Recently I read a study in the magazine Psychology Today which talked about lucky people and what they have in common. The article attempted to answer the age old question of whether it is possible to create one’s own luck. I’ll avoid the torturous suspense and tell you, the answer to that question is YES, you can create your own luck, and it is fairly easy (I’m a very lucky woman, who has the great fortune to be able to design jewelry components, and I concur).
One of the central themes of the article is that luck has as much to do with one’s attitude as it does with actual events. In the study, they profiled 2 people, one who rated themselves as lucky, and the other as being not very lucky. The separate individuals were told to take a certain path to a coffee shop and order a drink, and to wait for someone in the study to arrive. Unbeknownst to them, the directors of the study had placed a $5 bill on the path, and had a business executive be a patron at the coffee shop. The lucky person found the $5 bill, and also started a chat with the executive at the coffee shop, who could potentially be a valuable business lead. The self-rated unlucky person did not notice the $5 bill and walked right over it. She arrived at the coffee shop and ordered her drink and kept to herself, perhaps fairly unhappy that she was made to wait for a long time. What they found was that the lucky person was aware of his surroundings and had kept an open mind and was happy to meet and chat with people. Most lucky people feel that you never know where your next big break will come from. And with more repeated luck and success, they are open to situations and possibilities. On the contrary are self-admitted unlucky people who feel that nothing great ever happens to them. As a result, they do not make as many attempts or take risks, believing nothing good would come of it anyhow.
As I was saying, I am very lucky. Although I don’t win the lottery often, mostly because I hardly buy lottery tickets, I am lucky at spotting trends and my designs sell quite well, even in poor economies. I’m also lucky to find great suppliers and really great support staff. After reading the study, I thought about it a bit more and reflected on my luck. I think the reason I’ve been lucky in designing jewelry and jewelry components that become popular is because I keep an open mind when I am sourcing and searching. I enjoy speaking to customers and finding out what has worked well for them, what has sold well, and I try not to be down if I have missed a couple of trends in the past. It will always work out if I keep my eyes open, I have learned. I bet I’d be the one to find the $5 bill, and then some. I’ve been lucky with suppliers because I’m constantly asking for more, and expecting that I’ll be lucky enough to find more. If a jewelry component is a bit expensive, I know I’ll be lucky enough to come up with a great design and be able to sell it quickly and build my brand better. But I also pay a fair price and never squeeze someone until their margin is disproportionately low; it’s just good karma. I’m also super lucky when it comes to staff. Again, we pay fairly and what we can, but I think it is also that we keep our eyes and mind open to new leads and contacts. Even if someone does not continue working with us, we would have made a new friend.
So, my advice on luck in jewelry designing is this: 1. keep an open mind when looking for new jewelry components …you might not know what to do with the new silver finding that looks so strange, but know that when you start working with it, you might just be lucky and come up with a great hit. If you don’t try it, you won’t find out. Don’t buy the lottery ticket, you will for sure not win.
And 2. tell everyone about what you’re doing, what your needs and concerns are. Networking is the very beginning of most business relationships, and many great lasting friendships. You could find help in handwork in making your jewelry pieces. You could find your future sales rep….it is endless. Enlist the help of your jewelry component supplier. You just might get lucky.