Do You Have the Nuts?


When you “have the nuts” in poker, it means you have absolutely the best hand possible. So if you’re holding an ace and a king of diamonds, and there are three diamonds on the board, you have the nut flush. Nobody’s going to beat you. However, you have to know how to take advantage of that position. That means playing your strong hands very aggressively at the right time. The same principle holds true in business.

How Rachel Discovered She Had the Nuts

A PokerDivas alumna, Rachel, worked in the food and beverage business for about ten years. Although very successful, she decided to take a hiatus from what she was doing. 

A few weeks later, she got a call from a former colleague wanting help with a project.  Although the area was Rachel’s specialty, she wasn’t really interested unless it was financially worth her while. Rachel knew she was one of the few people with the relevant expertise; it was right in her sweet spot. She gave them a price, and they tried to talk her down. 

She asked for a day to think about it.

Rachel happened to be at a poker game that night, and as she was sitting there, she was dealt “pocket aces,” (two aces)  the best starting hand you can have. And at that moment, she said to herself, “You know what? I have pocket aces with this assignment. I have the nuts, and if there’s any time in my life that I’m going to get what I want, it’s now. I have the advantage over everybody else.” The next day, Rachel called up her former colleague and said, “I’m firm on my price.” 

Sure enough, they came through and gave her what she asked for.

The interesting thing about poker is that you may have the nuts at the moment but that may change with the turn of a card. The same is true in life; you may be virtually unbeatable, but that will not last forever. The trick is to make a strong play when the odds are on your side.

Got the Nuts? Here’s How To Make The Most of Them 

  1. Ask for What You Want. Don’t be afraid they’ll walk away or think you are too aggressive.
  2. Negotiate Aggressively. No one ever comes to you with their best offer first. When you’ve got the nuts, push for more with confidence. 
  3. Stand firm. When you’ve in this superior position, play hard to win and if you’re not satisfied be comfortable walking away.  

The cards can change at any time, so when you’ve got the nuts, make your move.


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