One of the main pieces of advice I give when mentoring is to be open to opportunities, no matter how off-the-wall or alarmingly huge they may seem. I’ve been presented with opportunities ranging from speaking for free at networking events and doing a podcast interview to speaking at a national conference and creating a partnership.

Every opportunity, no matter how small, is a chance for you to zero in on your company’s (or your life’s) vision. Despite what the title of this segment says, I’m not saying to seize EVERY opportunity. First, you need to have your vision in place so you know where you’re headed. Otherwise, how do you know if an opportunity is right for you? That vision can take a lot of pressure off you to make decisions. If the opportunity doesn’t fit the vision, the answer is no, simple as that.

Have you heard the analogy that creating a vision for your company is like creating a map? Would you go on a trip without knowing how to get where you’re going? First, figure out where you are, and then figure out where you want to go (GPS 101!) It’s the same with your company and life overall. If you don’t know where you want to go, how do you know what turns to take along the way?

Once you have a solid vision, the key is to be open to the opportunities that will truly fit that vision, no matter how small or massive they might be. Sometimes it can be beneficial to get a trusted third party to help you work through decisions, especially about the larger opportunities. And often once you’re giving them your vision and then presenting the opportunity, you’ll realize what the logical next step is. I just did this the other day with a friend and mentor of mine.

I’ll be reworking my vision over the next month so I can continue to seize the right opportunities – how about you?