Antarctica, Entrepreneurs & The Scarcity Myth

The myth of scarcity permeates every aspect of our culture and lives.  Whether it’s money, water, food, resources, jobs, opportunities, education… we are bombarded with messages of diminished supplies.  This causes us to be fearful and it creates a competitive mentality to take what we can without giving anything in return.  It makes us think only about protecting what we have and causes us to become fearful of taking risks, innovating or even offering help. 

What I loved about the Unstoppables expedition to Antarctica was that the founder, Julio De Laffitte, came up with the idea because of one simple belief: for Australia to get out of budget deficit, we need to create more business, not sell our assets.  We need to think bigger, not smaller.  His premise is that this can be done by encouraging Australian entrepreneurs. 

In meeting with 116 other entrepreneurs, two things became very clear to me:

  1. No one on the trip had a scarcity mindset, and
  2. Everyone on the trip was successful in their businesses.

This wasn’t a coincidence.  The two things were very much linked.  I’d like to share with you the common characteristics of every entrepreneur on that trip because I believe that it is this mindset and this outlook that creates success.

  • Generosity:  Every person was generous – whether it was with their time, knowledge, contacts or money. 
  • Adaptability: No matter what challenge Antarctica threw at us, everyone made the best of the situation.
  • Passion: Every entrepreneur was passionate, not just about what they do, but passionate to learn about what others do.  There was a thirst for knowledge and an innate inquisitiveness that was so refreshing to see.
  • Outspokenness: Everyone was not scared to ask questions, offer their opinion and challenge their peers, creating great conversations.
  • Multi-faceted: Everyone had a diverse range of interests other than their own business.  There was a strong sense of spirituality in the group with a greater understanding for the mind/body connection.
  • Accountability: Each entrepreneur felt accountable for their business, their success, their happiness – but on a greater scale, they felt accountable to our country and the world.  They asked “how can I help Australia?” and “How can I be a better global citizen?” And more importantly, they acted on it.

These character traits of success were shared by all, regardless of age, gender, background or industry.

For Australian business to succeed and grow, I believe leaders need to have these traits as well as promote and develop these traits in their employees. It is imperative for personal development, career development and business development.

So let’s lay the scarcity mindset to rest and awaken the mindset of success.