Don’t do it just because you can

Business opportunities come from all directions. But just because you can doesn’t mean you should. MICHEL HOGAN

Michel Hogan

By Michel Hogan

Business opportunities come from all directions. Suggested by colleagues, friends and sometimes by strangers, they are alluring. It is flattering when people suggest that you can do things that are beyond what you currently do. But just because you can, does that mean you should?

I was faced with this question this week while working with a client in San Francisco. This group has the quintessential entrepreneurial spirit – trying something new is hardwired in their DNA. Today they are at a cross roads and many of the ideas being suggested to them sounded like things they would be genuinely good at.

But just because you can be good at something and it seems somewhat related to what you are doing now, doesn’t mean it is a path to be taken. In the absence of a clear idea what your organisation’s promise is, it can be difficult to see what you should do and that is the problem my clients were facing. (For more from past blogs about promise and its value see here and here).

To help navigate new opportunities that present themselves, here are three questions I asked my client to explore that you can ask yourself.

  1. Don’t settle for what you can just be good at, ask yourself – what can we be the best in our world at?
  2. What can you bring to it that others can’t or don’t (be honest – if the answer is nothing then why would you even consider it)?
  3. Does it support your promise? (If you don’t know your promise then stop and figure it out before you even think about moving forward).

See you next week!


Alignment is Michel’s passion. Through her work with Brandology here in Australia, and Brand Alignment Group in the United States, she helps organisations align who they are, with what they do and say to build more authentic and sustainable brands.

For more Cultural Leadership blogs, click here.



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