How to Turn Failure Into Success

by Lois Leonard

2 min read

No business owner plans to fail, but sometimes failure happens. However, failure can provide valuable lessons and is a known stepping stone on the pathway to success. Here are some tips to help you and your employees think pragmatically about failures and turn them into wins.

Take a Step Back

As a small business owner, you put your heart, soul, and energy into making your enterprise succeed. Your enthusiasm is infectious and gets your employees excited about taking your company to the next level. But what if something along the lines of the following scenario happens? You and your team pull several all-nighters putting together what you believe to be a rock-solid presentation for the wealthiest prospective client you’ve had since you’ve been in business. The presentation fails and the prospective client chooses to do business with your competitor instead. If you experience a huge failure, you can avoid burnout by taking a step back instead of heading to the drawing board immediately. It’s a good idea for you and your staff to take some time off and recharge your batteries. Being well-rested gives you a fresh perspective to understand why you failed and how to turn things around.

Avoid Blaming Others

It’s rarely the case that a single person is to blame for a business failure. For failure to be a positive learning experience for your employees, avoid pointing the finger and blaming others. Instead, get together with your employees and engage in a substantive discussion about what caused the failure. To gain respect from your employees, you may wish to own up to ways that you may have failed, even if they don’t speak. It’s also important to remain upbeat while taking stock of a failure, which gets your employees excited about achieving success the next time around.

Embrace Trial and Error

Many business owners believe that the only way to achieve success is through failure. Stay open to trial and error. Even if your company failed at something, don’t let fear take over. Encourage your employees to keep sharing their innovative ideas with you. In fields such as software development, for example, trial and error is the only way to achieve success. In less scientific or mathematical fields, failing may require you to do more research on a topic or consult with an expert or mentor to gain insight about ways to improve on a process or solve a problem.

Start Over

You can also turn failure into success by hitting the reset button and starting over. You don’t have to consider failure as a setback. Instead, think of starting over as a new adventure, except this time, you’re armed with more information and tools to achieve your goal. Failure is a vital component of success. The best way to benefit from failure is to learn from your mistakes and be confident in your abilities to be a successful business owner.

References & Resources

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