Saturday, December 21, 2013

You don’t have to be right to be successful

If there is one thing I have learned during my career as a geologist then it is the fact that you don’t have to be right to be successful.  I have seen guys recommend and drill 11 or more dry wells in a row and being promoted.  Peter’s principal certainly comes to mind: "Employees tend to rise to their level of incompetence." Also, it is well known that success is often built on numerous failures.  As a geologist, I do not describe a rock accurately and therefor find oil. No, I only describe rock as good as I can in order to decide how to manage an oil or gas bearing asset as efficiently and profitable as possible.  I determine what ACTION to take next within the guidelines of the company where I happen to be engaged. It is not about being right but about taking action that makes the most sense.

That too is truly the crux of life!  You don’t need to know the truth and the precise future in order to move in ‘the right direction’.  Once you have made your move, just like in an oil or gas industry, you have to re-asses the performance of your action; check whether your action is working and what you may have to adjust. Next, implement your revised action plan. This you have to do over and over again – until the day you have no longer the energy to do so. As mentioned in an earlier post, This'll be the day you die [bye bye Miss American Pie J).
LIFE IS NOT ABOUT BEING RIGHT. IT IS ABOUT KNOWING ENOUGH TO TAKE ACTION IN MORE OR LESS THE RIGHT DIRECTION AND TO ADJUST YOUR ACTIONS WHEN THE RESULTS COME IN. Life is more about the journey than the goals, your Belize. So you better make sure that you enjoy the journey. And… before you reach your goals you should be ready to set new and even more ambitious goals. 

I do geology – something I enjoy tremendously – to describe rocks as good as I can with the goal to design actions that result in the highest hydrocarbon recovery with maximum profits and maximum benefits for society. The same is true for investing, I try to gain sufficient knowledge of an investment to choose the most profitable actions for myself and those around me; continuously adding to my investment knowledge and re-adjusting my actions will lead to ever better results.

In fact, I learn about life in generally not to create the perfect life model but to understand life as well as I can, to take actions based on my understanding; review the results and adjust/improve my actions. This is a world of continuous improvement! We all try to do something like this and that is why overtime our world will get better and better. Why do we want that our children to do better in life than we do? Because we’re failures? Or because we all are traveling  the same journey towards a better world and we better learn to enjoy that journey because once we meet our goals we just move the target even farther out!   I wish you a Merry Christmas and a better universe for all.

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