What Is Kairos?
I want to talk about our logo, because I designed it and wanted to intentionally incorporate some of my core values in the image. There are four words in the bottom the logo. Ethos, Pathos, Logos, and Kairos. Today I’ll write about Kairos and what it means to me as a businessperson. Although I apply this to every aspect my life- because Kairos to me just means to identify opportunity and have faith that I’m making the right decision.
Kairos is a Greek word that means the right or opportune moment. In the kitchen we call this the “critical control point”. Kairos is a critical control point in life. It’s the moment in which an opportunity is in front of you and you need to identify it or will slip away. It’s the time to act and to take a leap of faith. Business is all about risk. I believe life is all about risk too. You can either take a risk and win, or you might fail- but you will never know unless you try. You can’t live the life you dream if you stop yourself with the fear of the unknown. You can never know everything. No one can ever know everything.
Kairos is important to me. It’s an exercise in faith. It’s an exercise in identifying positive energy and believing that whatever happens will happen for the best.
Why is this important? I didn’t come up with this myself. Kairos was identified in ancient Greece by Aristotle. It’s a theory that in order to be an influential leader, you need four important tools that will directly impact how you can influence people and effectively lead them. Aristotle used these tools in politics, but I choose to use these tools in my life. They come into play most in my profession when it comes to sales.
When you develop a product, or when you’re looking to make a sale think of Kairos. Try to recognize that feeling that you get when you realize that there’s an opportunity. Usually it starts with an “I wish you had ____” or “Do you have______?”. When you open a business, you open it with a product or a service. You hope that the customer will like it, need it, and frequent your business but many times the customers want something slightly different.
It happened to me at my last business. I started as a traditional salumeria and sold salami and sausages by the pound. My customers asked me “Do you have BBQ?” “Do you have Pastrami?” “Do you have more sandwich options?”. I really wanted a traditional salumeria, and I didn’t want to own another restaurant. I saw the opportunity and I knew I had to make a change so that I could keep my customers happy. The Kairos there was 1st) when I saw that we needed a place to buy good meats in a forgotten community, and 2nd) when the people within that community wanted something slightly different than what I intended to sell. I’ve seen the same thing happen with other businesses. They succeed when the learn to identify opportunity, and they fail when they don’t.
A businessperson is a risk taker, and you can’t be one without that. When you go to sell something, you identify a need in the market, and you fill that need with a product or a service. Usually this need has an expiration date- someone is sure to think of the same thing and they might do it before you. For you to profit off your idea, you need to invest your money, you need to share your idea with investors, and open yourself to possibility of success or failure. I would like to think that failure is not an option, and that we have ways of controlling that it doesn’t happen. But we can’t tell the future, you can only follow data and trust that your decisions are the right ones. Having faith and leaping is the risk. The moment in which you need to trust and take the risk is the Kairos. Data will help you minimize risk, but it will never take it away.
Learn to identify opportunity and don't hold yourself back from the possibility of a new and better journey.