Failures and missed opportunities drive people to accomplish more. It is in our very nature to make mistakes – as the saying goes, “we are only human”. However, those who are able to pick themselves up and continue moving forward can accomplish great things. Many of the CEOs, founders, and leaders of industry that we know today have been through tremendous failure. Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group, says this about failure, “I have made hundreds of mistakes. I’m sure I’ll make many more this year, and learn valuable lessons from every error. Anybody who tells you they don’t make mistakes has just made one.” Even Thomas Edison, the father of the light bulb and modern electrical grid, said this, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10000 ways that won’t work.”
Resilience is what differentiates those who get discouraged from failure, and those who see it as an opportunity. In this Entrepreneur article, failure is depicted as one of the necessary steps to success. The contributor uses the example of Louis L’Amour, the great American novelist, who said, “I knew there was going to be failure, I just didn’t know how much.”
Resilient entrepreneurs and business leaders are able to view failure as one of the necessary stepping stones towards success. Failure is often something that sticks with these entrepreneurs and drives them. For example, Robert Herjavec, a Sharktank panelist and investor, arrived to America with very little money, and after his family lost it all, he vowed to never be in a similar position. Failure represents low points in one’s life, and in Robert’s case, it drives him to be successful and provide for his family.
Never be afraid to ask a question about something you don’t. Fail fast, fail often… but pick yourself up and take the next step once you do.