What is the line between taking advantage of opportunities and being an opportunist

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

What is the line between taking advantage of opportunities and being an opportunist

An opportunist is the person who may change his stand, if the situation demands so. Shrewd business people have always shown their tendency to be opportunists, in conditions where business circumstances lead them to act in such a manner. Men who are opportunists thrive on a very thin line of success. They might rake in millions, one day, speculating on a risky share investment, and lose them in a jiffy. 

One who waits for the right opportunity and then strike to take advantage is considered as a safe entrepreneur. He always chooses his options carefully, after weighing the pros and cons of the existing situation. A man should know where he stands; it helps him to become a better entrepreneur.

How difficult it is to take a stand

Opportunists are successful for just over a period of time.  They are usually patchy. Entrepreneurs who fall in this category are usually the speculative type. They tend to act as soon as they smell success. Such kind of venture normally turns out to be highly risky. Starters, for instance should never try and poke their nose on risky venues that can lead to trouble very early on in their career. 

What makes business people more adventurous is the fact that success associated with being opportunists has more benefits over a short time, if things go their way. Such type of success usually does not last for a long period. Those who are opportunists should have the foresight to read situations beforehand, to gain consistent success and for longer periods, which is normally not that easy. 

Often entrepreneurs find difficult to resist the lure of fast money. They look at those for inspiration who have been known to be opportunists all their life, and have built their fortune by being risky and quite often in the right way. What these aspiring entrepreneurs miss out is the so called opportunists who now seem to thrive on the fruits by being opportunists were not the way they are now. They began their business venture on a careful path. They learned the hard way on how to take advantage of the exiting opportunity, before their experiences led them to try their hand on big fortune. 

Highly successful speculators always learn their way up the ladder. They take precaution in the beginning. They are the same set of individuals who would be careful with their business strategies early on. These set of people begin to understand the way to identify the opportunity, and then slowly progress to grab them. They would then become expert on identifying opportunities, so they don’t have to waste time on identifying them when the opportunity arrives.

A successful entrepreneur is the one who identifies the opportunity before hand, but resist the lure of being speculative more than his business structure permits him. He always has the option to stay calm and first let the opportunity arrive, and then take advantage of them. However, if the business owner sits for the opportunity to arrive, he may find it too late to react, because there are others who may have put their money on the opportunity, even before it has arrived.

Business ventures are therefore, tough. There is a very thin line that separates the two. It all depends on how one looks at the opportunity. It also depends on how easy the opportunity arrives. The easier the opportunity comes, the more laid back a business owner is. A rare opportunity compels an entrepreneur to act as an opportunist. He tries to seize them before others, who are also in the hunt for the same.  That is why he is called the opportunist, because he found it even before it has arrived for others to pounce on it. 

It all boils down to the question, how a person should decide on whether he should be an opportunist, or rather wait for the right opportunity to knock at the door. An opportunity doesn’t always come knocking at somebody’s door. The best way forward would be to always stand on the toes, and keep a watch on the opportunity. 

A good foresight is essential to make out the possibility of existing opportunities. As soon as the entrepreneur gets the smell of the arriving opportunity, he should pounce on it. Such moves may backfire, especially, when entrepreneurs launch new products in the market. But business needs a certain element of risk. That’s how the business grows. Lack of initiative simply pushes the entrepreneur out of the race. It is important to establish a business setup, without risking everything on stake. An entrepreneur should be an opportunist, but he should always decide beforehand, to what extent he can afford to be an opportunist.  

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