Celebrating Failure: The Way to Success
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Have you celebrated Success? Of course, you have. Everyone has a reason to do that some time or the other. But have you failed in life? Miserably? At which you lost everything you had? So let’s celebrate failure. Let’s learn from our failures. We can only learn from our own failures, not from others because only we know what we go through when a business collapses. Where did we go wrong? What decisions took us down that spiral? As we all go through successes, we all also go through failure. Very few have an only upward trajectory in life. Aim for early failure, as you have the least to lose in the beginning.
Success and Failure: Needless to say these are 2 sides of the same coin. But the 2 sides are not identical. One is Heads, the other something else. Which way will your tossed coin drop? It depends on many factors. Begins with your initial planning, your actions and decisions along the way, your luck quotient, and many more factors like the industry you are in, Government policy changes, etc. Yes if failure has to happen, it will. Be prepared if possible.
In India there is a stigma attached to failures, going bankrupt etc. It’s not like the USA where when you fail there is always another opportunity which will be funded. We have no fall back to rely upon. People around you look down and avoid you if you have failed.
With the startup environment catching up with risk equity coming into play, chances are better that one can emerge even after failures into a new avatar. So do your best and leave the rest to God.
Gym Analogy: To understand the role failure plays in our business life, look at the Gym. To build muscle, you need to do weights. It’s the resistance created that helps your muscle form and grow. Failure is one such resistance which helps shape your ability to grow a successful business. A failure early in life provides the impetus and experience to grow a big successful enterprise later in life. It’s the ‘resistance’ to success.
Experience the Bad to savour the Good.
F.A.I.L. : To Fail (First ambition in Life). One has to fail at one endeavour to be super successful. Failure teaches the path to success. Believe in success in life. In fact, in present-day corporate hiring, a failure CV stands the highest chance to get a great job. Corporates have realized what it means to have set up something and failed. It’s a learning experience like no other. It becomes an all rounded teacher. One has to have faced every possible obstacle, overcome many, yet get pushed under. Many job aspirants are now sending out such CVs rather than highlighting achievements.
Some examples of failures who turned to stupendous success later in life.
a) Stephen King: the super successful author: His first book CARRIE was rejected by 30 publishers before it was finally accepted leading to huge success. Failure taught him the way forward.
b) Steve Jobs: We all know Steve Jobs for what he achieved at Apple. But his past is a litany of failures, defeats and crushing setbacks. He was thrown out but came back to make Apple a great company.
c) Walt Disney: Walt Disney is remembered for his many successes - for Mickey Mouse, for Donald Duck, for Disneyland.
But he also saw his share of hard failures including bankruptcy, a mental breakdown, a devastating strike, and the loss of control over his creation Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. He discussed these failures frankly. He once said, “You may not realize it when it happens, but a kick in the teeth may be the best thing in the world for you.”
d) Colonel Sanders: Colonel Sanders Failed 1009 Times Before Succeeding. Colonel Harland Sanders has become a world-known figure by marketing his Kentucky Fried Chicken. The story of Colonel Harland Sanders is an example of how perseverance, dedication, and ambition along with hard work can create success; regardless of your age.
At the age of sixty-five, after running a restaurant for several years, Harland Sanders found himself penniless. He retired and received his first social security check which was for one hundred and five dollars.
He failed hundreds of times before succeeding.
It’s amazing how the man started at the age of 65, when most retire, and built a global empire out of fried chicken. It’s never too late to build your dream.