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The Cost of Missed Opportunities

Many years ago, when I was in my twenties, an older woman I knew always complimented me on my outfits. I was so proud to tell her what a terrific bargain I had gotten on the yellow and green two-piece.

I remember her saying to me, “See, I need to be more like you and keep a stash saved for when items are on sale.” She went on to say that her paycheck was gone as soon as she cashed it at the bank.

What she was describing is an example of the cost of missed opportunities. In your personal affairs and in business, it’s essential to have a surplus of funds for a couple of different reasons:

1. Everyone and every business should have enough cash on hand to handle 3-6 months of regular expenses in case of an emergency or crisis.

2. Available cash allows you to take advantage of good sales like the Gloria Vanderbilt blouse and pants I found on sale back then, for a fraction of the regular cost.

3. During times of economic slowdown or even a recession, property, equipment, and various assets hit the market at a fraction of what they were sold for just a year or two earlier.

If you don’t have the money or assets necessary to make the deal, then you’ll miss the opportunity to expand your wardrobe as I did or your business. Another factor in missing opportunities that may cost you later is indecision. I’m reading the book “The Power of Decision by Raymond Charles Barker, which lays out a step-by-step program to overcome indecision.

All successful people have one thing in common – they make decisions quickly. Leaders agree that great ideas are just ideas, if the person fails to act upon them.

Barker says “that success and failure are results of the use of the mind. Every success-motivated mind has been a decisive mind. Every failure-motivated mind has been an indecisive mind.” He goes on to say that not making a decision, is a decision to fail.

So what will indecisiveness cost you? It might cost you a large contract, because you lacked the motivation to set aside the funds to purchase the equipment or raw materials needed to fulfill the contract. It could mean a missed chance to purchase a piece of land, only to discover later that a major company is moving to the area and looking for land to lease or purchase for their new plant.

Whatever the cost, one thing is for sure, the opportunity to capitalize on the time and place has passed you by. Perhaps it will surface again or another opportunity will arise in its place. Either way, get prepared to snatch up any opportunity by first making a decision to grow and succeed. Secondly, begin by putting a plan in place to be financially ready and finally, when the time is right – POUNCE on the opportunity like a tiger.

The cost of being ill-prepared and indecisive is not a price you want to pay. In business you have way more to lose than not being as fashionable as the next person.

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