What’s the failure equation?

If you are determined to fail, you should follow this equation: failure = nopportunities + resources + action.

Let’s say you want to do a business. You must start with an opportunity, and to scale it you must use resources, and you must take action. But if you pursue a nopportunity instead of an opportunity, then you’re guaranteed to lose your resources and waste your time, regardless of how much hard work you put into it.

Obviously, the choice of whether you pursue an opportunity or a nopportunity is the most crucial part of the equation. The opportunity is the seed from which all businesses grow. If you want to grow a mighty sequoia tree, but instead plant seeds for a pine tree, regardless of how much pruning you do, or nutrients you pour in, you’re headed for a big disappointment.

Better yet, if you pursue an opportunity, you will attract resources to you, and therefore will be better able to successfully take action. If you pursue a nopportunity, you will not only waste resources and time, but you will also repel rather than attract resources. You’ll also find it very difficult to raise money.

Even if you have a large company, if most of the employees are busy following the failure equation, you could destroy the entire business. If highly talented people from your organization are pursuing nopportunities they are starving resources that could be used to pursue viable opportunities. They will be incurring nopportunity costs, instead of opportunity gains.