Why failing in business is crucial to succeeding in business
No one likes to fail. It’s embarrassing, it makes you deeply vulnerable, and in the case of running a business, it often involves the incredibly personal connections of your life’s passions and your life’s savings. But if you spend every day terrified of failing, you’ll be too scared to try what’s really needed and you’ll never maximize your true potential.
I see this resistance to failure every day, and it makes sense—we’re taught to feel shame in making mistakes, in being anything less than “the best.” But being a successful entrepreneur isn’t just something that “happens” in a set moment in time. It’s a constantly evolving process.
Real, meaningful change means taking chances and opening yourself up to the unfamiliar, and occasionally, falling flat on your face.
However, if you treat every loss as just as much of a learning tool as your wins, then you’ll be able to develop a smartly forged path to long-term success. When things don’t go your way, don’t wallow in your failure (for too long), use it to analyze where things went wrong, so next time they can go right.
Listen to your critics and take their complaints seriously, but never personally.
In business, we should never be too complacent, even when things are going well. What’s bringing people in today may lead to stagnation next year if it’s no longer enticing enough. No one becomes and stays successful without consistently taking the risk to make big leaps—not quite knowing if it will cause them to stumble or if it will get them to that next level.
And aside from those defining moments of effort and failure being critical to your overall success, on a personal level, it gives you experience, expertise, the ability to problem solve and think more critically, and it builds resilience and true character.
We all grow so much more from lessons learned “the hard way.”
So whether it’s habit, stubbornness, or just fear that’s holding you back, it’s time to let it go. Failure isn’t forever, but how you allow setbacks to transform who you are and how you run your business will last a lifetime.