I was talking to a new business owner who was worried about failure. He kept saying, “What will I do if this doesn’t work? I have young children, a mortgage, and other bills to think about.”
This “What if I fail?” worry is the biggest thing that stops people from either starting a business or expanding their current business.
“What if I fail?”
Of course you’re going to fail! Every massively successful business failed, and failed often.
What people don’t understand is that the largest part of building a successful business is figuring out what works and what doesn’t. Failure is a large part of this formula! The key to figuring out what works is to keep at it.
- Try what you think will work.
- See what worked and what didn’t.
- Adjust what didn’t work.
- Try again, and
- Repeat the first four steps on this list until you get it right!
Thomas Edison’s famous quote when he was asked about his many failures in trying to invent a working light bulb says it all when it comes to how an entrepreneur should think:
“I have not failed. I’ve found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”
I personally like another one of Thomas Edison’s quotes:
“Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”
The only way to become a successful entrepreneur is to work hard at making your product or service so excellent that your customer can’t ignore you. And the only way to do that is to keep learning what works and improving your product or service.
So, fail until you don’t!