Learning From Failure

Entrepreneurs are celebrated for their ability to create successful businesses and provide jobs locally and globally. But in many cases success is often preceded by failure.

Learning from failure

Entrepreneurs set out to be successful when they start in business but often experience failure as part of the learning process.

Many entrepreneurs are driven even more to succeed once they feel the sting of early failure in a new venture.

In some cases, however, the taste of defeat is enough to kill their adventure if the surrounding culture is negative and hostile towards failure.

Nobody plans to fail and failing repeatedly can be soul destroying unless lessons are learned quickly and applied to the next endeavour.

Trying and failing and learning are key ingredients of success and such characteristics can develop over time and with experience.

But a fear of failure and an unwillingness to try are a toxic mix of behaviours often driven by an environment dominated by too much caution and too little risk taking.

Not least because the less people try the less they succeed and the greater the level of missed opportunity.

But the days of seeking the safe option are over as the economy shifts from one that provides jobs and security to one that disrupts jobs and security.

Dealing with failure, as a result, is becoming a key skill as it enables everyone to think and act like an entrepreneur.

Thinking like an entrepreneur doesn’t mean always making the right decision but it does mean not letting the fear of making decisions hold you back.

From failure to success

In future years the idea of failure will be seen as part of the process of success just as falling down is part of the process of learning to walk.

Instead of teaching the idea that success is an uninterrupted journey of achievement students will be taught that success often involves learning from failure.

Schools, universities and training organisations will develop programmes that welcome people who have tried and failed and learned to succeed.

The idea of someone failing and being given a second and third chance will become the norm, as the way of the entrepreneur is embraced and mainstreamed.

Greater awareness about how to learn from failure will come from all quarters as governments, banks and other institutions absorb their own lessons and losses.

Countries like the United States that view failure as part of the entrepreneurial process will recover more quickly from set backs and mistakes.

Countries that shy away from failure will be less entrepreneurial and less successful as they stay in recovery mode for longer periods of time.

So, entrepreneurs start businesses and succeed beyond their wildest dreams but often only after trying and failing and trying again.