This is a post I wrote last year. It has some striking lessons for me and I believe that anyone working on a startup right now and facing some challenges can find it useful. It initially appeared on my personal blog and I am reproducing it here for you to enjoy.
“The fear of making mistakes is what stagnates growth.” – Unknown
Looking back to my first attempt at blogging I remember I use to read about blogging and internet business from a Local Journal. I hoped that one day, I will start blogging too. But I was afraid to start, because I do not want to fail. I gave lots of excuses. I did not know anything about blogging (though I knew how to spell blog), plus my spellings and English was very poor. I was also afraid that I would not get an audience to read my stuff.
I had lots of reasons why I would not start, but I took the bold step and started. If you want to see my first attempt, it’s here.
“If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.”
I am not here to tell you about how to play it safe and not fail. I want to share with you how expecting failure and failing smartly and failing fast can help your business GROW.
Expect to Fail
If you move to a new territory, you will miss your way a couple of times before getting use to the routes that leads to you home, office or the grocery shop. Does that make you silly or stupid? off course not. It is just the way life is.
Here is another example, babies that are about to walk. They make several failed attempts, until eventually take start walking effectively, the parents will be filled with smile, even the baby would be excited too, always eager to walk.
When you are in a business for the first time, it is expected that you are venturing into an unfamiliar territory. Even if you’ve been in business for a while, you may never grow beyond where you are, if you don’t try out new things. You know the moment you try out something new, you are bound to make some mistakes. Do not let the mistakes you will make draw you back.
Failure is the breakfast of champions
I am not sure there is any successful business person or innovator today that has not failed many times. Rather than let the failure make them stagnate or draw them back, they learn from it and make certain changes and try again. Even at that, the Failing process help creativity and innovation, so it never stops
Have you ever played the game Angry Birds? It is made by Rovio Mobile. I had the privilege of seeing a tweet yesterday that mentioned that Angry bird was their 52nd game, hmm! I got the full story for you here incase you want to read the article from wired.co.uk. Just imagine how rough things would have been for them. The story has it that before they succeeded at this game they were in crisis in 2009. They are not relaxing on the laurels, they are currently working on creating cock book and entering into China.
Check history, you will find one story after the other.
The fear of failing would limit you from innovating and trying new things that would help you to discover new ways of growing your business. Playing it safe isn’t good for your business. This is not to say you should fail without learning, making changes and improving on what you are doing.
This Apple get it right the first time they went into the production of mobile phones? NO. See where they are now. Angry bird, was even built on the iPhone platform. It is the platform that gave them the exposure and made them this big. Apple was never afraid to step into an unfamiliar territory, which is the mobile phone. They have since been recording several business growth.
Be Smart with it
Make changes where necessary once you have failed. Where you need to apply being smart is in making amends once you find out what is not working. You do not have to quit. Your failure simply means something did not work, find it, fix it, and move on.
There are several things that affect the business process, including trends and seasons. Being comfortable with the way you are used to working may be your greatest hindrance to GROWTH. Embrace failure and use it as a tool to grow your business.
What is your perception about failure and how have you been responding to it? I will like to hear from you in the comment section, let’s discuss it together.
Feel free to share the post if you know someone who is going to benefit by reading it.