Being a business owner is not for the faint of heart. You must have determination, courage, and strength.
You must also possess the innate ability to brush off failure and not let it define you as a business person. Because if you venture into the crazy world of business ownership, you will fail. It’s not an if kind of question but a when.
Yet, some new business owners believe the perfectionist myth when trying to craft an entire business perfectly the first time. That’s like trying to build this LEGO Ninjago City with 4867 pieces from just the picture. Sure, you may get close, but it’s probably not going to be right. And it may look okay from the outside, but fall apart the first time you use it.
Instead of running away from failure, find new ways to embrace it or you’ll be putting your new business at risk. Here’re a few ideas to help you switch your perception of what failure means and learn to use it to build your new business.
My favorite failure quote is by Thomas Edison:
I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.
That’s one of the most famous failure quotes in history for a reason. You may have the best product on the market but your marketing strategy is nonexistent. Or your niche may not love your tasty new pumpkin latte because you launched it in the spring. There’s a million reasons why your business may fail.
Remember that you have to get all the pieces working exactly right to find business success. That doesn’t mean your entire business is a failure. It just means that you have to go back to the drawing board and figure out what went wrong with your plan and make a course correction.
Failure’s not your enemy. It’s what tells you that you’re headed down the wrong path.
Put Failure In Perspective
You see statistics like 8 out of 10 businesses fail and it becomes very scary to start a business. Especially when it’s your life’s dream. Failing at your dream job is the kind of soul crushing event that can make you question your entire life. But before you go off the depression deep end, let’s put failure into context.
Failure is a learning tool. You can beat yourself up for failing (which we all do to some extent) or you can learn what you did wrong. Think about the process of starting a business and all the decisions that go into a business plan. The entire process is a learning experience! But let’s say that business fails spectacularly. You could give up and never try again, or you could learn from that experience and do things differently the next time.
It’s all about perspective.
Complacency Is Your Real Enemy
Complacency is what really kills new businesses. When you stop trying new things, you put your business at risk. Sure, failure can be painful. But not trying at all, because you don’t want to fail, is a recipe for disaster. Failing simply means you’re still trying to improve your business.
In How to Start Selling Online in 6 Simple Steps, Molly Corless shares:
The more you learn, though, the better you’ll do. Test new tactics and designs, make adjustments, and never get complacent. Do all of this, and you’ll be sure to eventually find a formula that works, even if it takes a little time.
Failing is hard, stressful and frustrating. It’s also the risk you have to take when you’re bringing in new ideas and tactics into your business.
Make Failing Part of Your Plan
Business does not have an “everyone wins” philosophy where everyone gets a trophy even if their team lost. It’s a tough path filled with a million other businesses trying to win over your customers. It’s not about protecting your feelings.
That may be tough to hear for some people, but failing is an essential part of any successful business. It’s not anything you want to avoid because the only path forward is one like this:
- Try again
Never forget that business growth means learning from failure. It’s really that simple. You’ll never succeed if you become complacent and forget that you need to fail in order to grow.
Imagine what you could accomplish!
Image courtesy Amazon.*