Are we enterprising enough?  Do we see an opportunity and really take advantage of the chances we are given?

I’ve just returned from spending 3 weeks in Peru, a country where you can bet if an opportunity arises somebody will come along and claim it for their own.

Making money is very difficult for the people of Peru.  In fact just simply earning a living is hard enough with the average wage being 200 Nuevo Soles per month (around £40 or $75).
This chap however earns that in ten minutes.  How?  He offers a service which ships tourists between reed islands on Lake Titicaca.  It’s optional for the tourists to get on his boat as they could just get back on the tour ship but who in their right mind would want to miss out on such a once in a lifetime trip?  He charges just 10 soles (£2), for the privilege and he can fit 20 people on his boat.  One months wage in ten minutes.

Then there are the early bird tourists who want to catch the first bus up to Machu Picchu at 5:30am.  These people have left their hotels too early to get breakfast so a couple of enterprising ladies walk up and down the queue selling breads, pastries and hot drinks.  It’s a captive market again, the success rate is about 1 in 10 and the queue is about 400 people long.  Pretty good going for a business before 6am!

Finally there are the sales people who hang around the water tower where both the Puno to Cuzco train and the return journey stop to cross and to get water.  These people who normally work in the fields know the exact time of day these trains pass through and make sure they are ready to sell their local produce and gifts to their captive audience aboard the train.

These kind of opportunities happen for a reason – without them these people could not survive.

Opportunities don’t tend to present themselves to us in the same manner, at least that is to say we often have a choice to either follow them up or let them pass us by.  Sometimes we simply let things slip because they are too much hassle to follow up.

What if the next opportunity you see has the potential to earn you a months salary in 10 minutes?  Would you let it pass you by then?