Ever gone into a business and think to yourself that you could do it better? Amazed things are going so well in a business despite heaps of steaming ineptitude at every turn?
It’s because idiots have 1 major advantage – contingencies (and their complete disregard for them)
The infinite what-if scenarios intelligent people can dream up are astounding. Idiots can’t think of all these things, can’t comprehend what can go wrong, don’t realize they’ve skipped 20 steps of the “correct” process and simply execute.
If the business is solving a real problem AND has some real value AND the most probable contingencies don’t result in being knocked out of the business game permanently, it’s better to move forward. Alex Becker talks about this in the 10 Pillars of Wealth when he says “Focusing on What Is and not the What If” and his concept is spot on, but leaves the reader to incorrectly believe that planning and thinking ahead isn’t valuable. What Alex is trying to get at is this:
There are only 2 things to consider in a ‘worst-case’ scenario: 1) The probability of occurrence, and 2) The probability that you can’t adapt / change / start over easily.
In Austin, there are scooters that you rent for $1 a minute. You pick them up wherever they’re randomly left, ride them and drop them off randomly. People could steal tons of scooters, disable their GPS tracker, and the business owner would be out quite a bit. Since the probability of this is very low, and even if there was theft, they’re still in the business game overall, this is a thing that an idiot would ignore (since they never thought about it to begin with) and move forward. However, if the business was to offer a product with a refund guarantee and then never give the refunds and there’s so many class action lawsuits that occur, well now you’re a bankrupt criminal (Don LaPre late night get rich infomercials come to mind). Now you’re out of the business game.
Same for Anytime Fitness with having a key fob to get access. It can easily be shared and members let their friends in secretly. An idiot wouldn’t think about this and just realize that 24/7 access to a gym is valuable and people can and will pay for it, and executes. Smart people want to see the holes in everything – and there’s always holes somewhere. If someone lets their friend in secretly in the gym, the owner isn’t out of the business game altogether, and it’s worth just moving forward as they can adapt to solve that problem or start over easily.
The scorn (and subsequent envy) of idiots blinds us from seeing the subtle mentalities that are sometimes valuable to adopt.
Are your “what-ifs” brilliant ways of never executing anything or are they considering both the probability of occurring as well as the potential to knock you out of the game altogether.