Today we’re talking failure, and the positive flip side of things going wrong.
Firstly, what even is “failure” anyway? It’s completely subjective. What’s impressive for one person is terrible for another. If Richard Branson only made $1 million this month, I doubt he’d even cover his expenses. But if my company made that much money, I’d be jumping for joy!
So the first thing to realise is that failure is created by YOU. You get to decide what failure means to you. You need to draw a line between what is failure and what is success. This could be a monetary number - like earning $10,000 in your business this month. It could be a metric, like increasing your email open rate to 20%. But the most important thing is that you decide what it means to succeed or fail.
Next up, remember that failure is normal. Failure just means you learned something. If you do X, Y and Z to get your $10,000 this month, and you only get $3,000 - yes you “failed”, but in fact you gained important knowledge that doing X, Y, and Z doesn’t work - so you can try something else.
Tweaking, testing and experimenting are a normal part of business life. Even when you follow a system like my business building programme Become Your Own Boss, you need to know exactly what will work for your audience - that comes from the market research I support you in putting together at the beginning of the programme, and from consistent dialogue with the audience I help you to build. If in doubt, ask your audience.
It’s one step closer
Every time you “fail”, it means you are one step closer to success. Napoleon Hills says failure brings with it the “seed of success”, and I love that way of thinking. Each time you fail, you are doing something to learn and nurture that little seed. Instead of seeing one small set back as the end of the world, be thankful that you learned what doesn’t work. Making mistakes is a great help in understanding how to risk-proof your business.
Trust me, it’s a blessing to “fail” in front of your little 100 person list, and know not to use that strategy when you are trying to have a $250,000 launch a couple of years down the line!
It builds resilience
Use your failings as the learning curve they are, because it builds the number one success factor in entrepreneurship: resilience. Things won’t always go perfectly in business - stuff messes up sometimes. Rather than letting it push you off track, take your learnings from the experience and jump back on the horse to get on with it again.
What have you learned through past failures? Leave me a comment and let me know!