Necessity is the mother of invention. Every mistake is the critical opportunity to evolve yourself, your product, and your business to create something bigger than you originally imagined.
“The best entrepreneurs usually have a few battle scars and war stories to tell.”
– Richard Branson, Founder & CEO, Virgin
We know this inherently, but coming back from failure is easier said than done.
After being laid off, closing up shop, cutting losses on a project thousands of hours in…those moments define us: as fragile or resilient.
How do we approach rock bottom business experiences as just that: valuable experience?
Shift into a growth mindset
When looking at business leaders who overcame their failures and those who crumbled, Carol Dweck’s research highlighted one key differentiator: mindset.
“In the fixed mindset, when you fail; you’re a failure. In the growth mindset, when you fail; you’re learning.”
High achievers in every realm, including business and entrepreneurship, focus on effort, rather than an intelligence or talent, believing they can and must always improve.
Look for the lesson that could be your next big idea
Mary Kay Ash resigned from Stanley Home Products after 25 years in sales, fed up with being passed over for promotions in favor of men she had trained.
Her frustration led to writing out an advice book for other women in business – refining her experience into lessons learned, which she then realized was the blueprint for her own business. Mary Kay Cosmetics was born.
“For every failure, there’s an alternative course of action. You just have to find it. When you come to a roadblock, take a detour.”
Fortify your resiliency
Resiliency is the foundational ability to approach failures as opportunities, transforming your mistakes and hardships into unique strengths and value.
This current challenge is a prerequisite for the grit and wisdom that will fuel your next venture.
If you’ve been a practicing workaholic, your resiliency tank is probably on empty, which translates into a lack of the clarity, perspective, and energy required to design and launch a comeback that transcends the vision you had originally imagined.
Revisit your core values and take stock. Commit to realigning your life where it has deviated. Take advantage of the chaos to establish better routines to support your health, well-being, and relationships.
If genuine success is a quality life of meaning and impact, then our measures for success must reflect a bigger picture.
Perhaps the biggest failure we can experience in our careers is that of pursuing business success with dogged single-mindedness, refusing to evolve when we are clearly failing elsewhere in our lives.