This is the question Glenn Llopis posed in his book on business success, Earning Serendipity: 4 Skills for Creating and Sustaining Good Fortune in Your Work. Llopis is an accomplished corporate executive (Gallo Wines, Sunkist) and business expert (board of advisors at the Society and Business Lab at the Marshall School of Business at USC).
In many ways, it’s your traditional business book – the success paradigm (in this case, the 4 skills); the case studies (Llopis uses Amazon.com, Costco, Google, and IKEA), the call to action (two self-assessments provided at the end of the book). If you read dozens of business books each year like I do, this is a good one to add to the shelf because of its examination of luck/ good fortune/ momentum. Llopis takes a topic that isn’t covered much and gives it some depth.
What I love about the book is where it veers from the traditional business book:
Earning Serendipity is a much cooler way of saying, “Make your own luck.” We all know deep down that people get lucky when they have prepared and built a solid foundation. We know we should do this. Llopis drives this point home and gives us a roadmap on how to do this with the 4 skills to make your own luck and to make it stick over time.
Peppered throughout the book are quotes from his dad, in the English translation but also in the original Spanish. I don’t speak Spanish but I LOVED having the original text. To Llopis’ point (or rather his father’s original point) about appealing to the head AND the heart, the quotes in their original form give the book a heart and personality missing in a lot of business books.
If you like to garden, you’ll love this book. I don’t like to garden so sometimes I felt I couldn’t appreciate the farming metaphors as much, but I appreciated them. There’s a grounded feel to this book. Grounded, earth, farming, maybe Llopis planned that…
It has the elements of a business book, but is breezy and fun for the reader.