"Millionaires don't have astrologers, billionaires do."
Is the future of your business written in the stars?
I’m supposed to have been a multi-millionaire by now with a partner and kids and a career as this country’s most influential politician. My readiness for such a prestigious posting was apparently gained over many years of experience as a political adviser to kings and queens – not just years of experience but lifetimes, 14 of them to be precise.
None of that, of course, is true. But the psychics who channeled those visions at the time seemed incredibly convincing. Now they’re just un-credibly convincing.
So why do some entrepreneurs and corporate types turn to tarot readers, psychics, fortunetellers and other manifestations of the supernatural? You’d hope it’s simply a desire for an intuitive sounding board, a metaphysical second opinion. But it seems as though many seriously consider astrologers to be a substitute for rigorous business analysis.
It’s rumoured, for example, that JP Morgan – the man, not the corporation – was scheduled to be on the Titanic but pulled out at the last minute because his astrologer told him not to board. He listened to her urgings and was grateful to have done so since, unlike others on that vessel, he lived for another year.
His reliance on an astrologer in many areas of business investment is perhaps best demonstrated by his quotation that “millionaires don’t have astrologers; billionaires do”.
Closer to home, I was talking recently with the owner of a mid-sized accounting firm who told me he never makes a major decision without first consulting his “spiritual guide”. She, for example, counseled him against expanding further interstate and advised him to close entirely one of his offices. He dutifully complied and doesn’t at all regret his decision.
Understandably, the guy wants to remain anonymous, conscious of the damage it’d do to his reputation (and perhaps to his business) if he were to ever come out of the closet as a passionate believer.
In the book Signs of Success: the remarkable power of business astrology, Steven Weiss writes that astrologers have made substantial contributions to the business success of luminaries such as Walt Disney, Bill Gates and Oprah Winfrey, and have been indispensable for presidents like Ronald Reagan who is famously said to have been addicted to his personal astrologer’s views.
Weiss explains that business leaders can learn from astrologers because, when they dismiss them, they put themselves “at a disadvantage in understanding international clients and consumers”.
What he’s suggesting is that in a globalised world where customers can come from anywhere, it’s important to account and cater for people (such as those in India) whose culture is more inclined to believe in this sort of stuff.
So, if you’re thinking of starting a new business, here’s one thing in particular you should keep in mind from an astrological perspective: apparently, dates are crucially important.
Some astrologers reckon it’s best to launch a new venture on a Wednesday or a Saturday, while others recommend kicking off in concert with a new moon, the upcoming dates of which are January 1 and January 30. The 30th, however, happens to be a Thursday – a clear contradiction there within the profession.
It’s difficult, though, to believe any astrologer is capable of predicting the future. The three I’ve personally consulted have been freakishly accurate at telling me my past and present, with all three describing my life with such clarity and consistency it could not possibly relate to anyone else. (In other words, they’re extremely talented at telling me what I already know.)
But as for what’s to come? The jury’s still out on that one and, for that reason, it’s somewhat disconcerting for people in business to be relying on them. Nevertheless, I’ll keep waiting for that first million.
Do you believe in astrology? What are your experiences?
Follow James Adonis on Twitter @jamesadonis