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Black Swan Events

The Black Swan Theory describes events which is seen as hard-to-predict or very unlikely in the course of your business. These events can ruin the outcome of the business venture or deal you are busy with, because you were not ready to handle them. All the times you said: “I was so close,” when you lost out on something, it was probably due to a black swan event.


Nassim Taleb, author of The Black Swan, believe that we, as human beings, can still predict the unpredictable. Although we blame Black Swan events for the failure of most ventures, it is in fact untrue. He alleged: “The inability to predict outliers implies the inability to predict the course of history”.

This, to me, was a very interesting thought.


Is there really something as a new event? Something never seen before? Everything happening in life, is just a repeat of what has already happened. Maybe not exactly the same but the same in its blueprint. If you can teach yourself to see through everybody’s eyes, you can change the course of the situation to your advantage. 

Create the scenario in your head. Play it out from your side, then from your “opponent’s” side. How would you have reacted if you were placed in his shoes? Do this for all the role players in the venture you are in. Think about their family, partners and even financial situations.


Be prepared for every single outcome you can possibly think of.


This is where the history of your industry also come into play. The more you know, the more you can prepare. Do not just go on your own experience, expand your frame of reference by using other peoples experience and implying that on your situation.


Change the outcome, don’t let the outcome change you.

Knowledge truly is power, a cliché, I know, but the more knowledge you have, the better you can prepare for the possibility of a Black Swan. Black Swan events do exist, but that doesn’t mean you cannot be prepared for them.

Nassim left me with this final though:

“Remember that you are a Black Swan.”
How are you going to change your situation?

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