5 Lessons You Can Learn From Failure

Achieving the results you’re aiming for the first time around is rare. The best lessons are learned when things don’t happen the way you want them to and you find out what doesn’t work as planned. Tweaking a strategy or two, eliminating distractions, and regrouping after falling short of the desired result are all benefits of what is usually perceived as failure.

Working hard towards a successful outcome involves rolling with the punches – allowing yourself room to grow and learning from mistakes. From restructuring your business to learning when to cut your losses, the lessons from failure will empower you to utilize alternative methods you otherwise might not have stumbled upon had you not failed the first time around.

1. Explore Strategies That Will Work

When it comes to strategy, the only way to figure out what is really effective is learning what isn’t. Of course there are existing methods that have been tried and tested, but those often don’t work for everyone. If you can’t find a way to make it work, create a new way.

Don’t be afraid to explore uncharted territory in terms of finding new ways of doing things. Give yourself permission to explore new avenues. When you feel stuck, recalibrate your approach and forge ahead.

2. Know When to Cut Your Losses

Having trustworthy, hardworking co-founders are imperative to owning and operating a successful business. As CEO, it is your responsibility to explicitly communicate your expectation and goals to your team. If the workload or productivity is unbalanced and one team member ends up taking the reigns on every project, there will be issues.

If you’ve started your business with friends and you’ve made several attempts to boost their enthusiasm and it doesn’t work, perhaps it’s time to move forward with your project as a solopreneur. In order to avoid a messy cutting of business ties, draft a contract outlining each person’s responsibilities as well as a quantified list of reached goals or tasks that fell upon your shoulders.

3. Fine-Tune Your Instincts

If something doesn’t feel right, but you try it anyway and realize it was the wrong move, therein lies the lesson. If you try a certain approach to your marketing strategy that you were hesitant about and it doesn’t work, you’ll know better in the future. Listen to that feeling that made you hesitant in the first place.

4. Start Fresh

If all else fails, start fresh. Regardless of which business aspect you’re working on, it’s never too late to stop, drop everything, and rework it. Begin anew if you have to. Lay a new, stronger foundation and take only what you need from your prior strategies.

5. Evolve Alongside Your Business

Mistakes yield lessons and growth. As you grow, so will your business. When your mindset evolves, it becomes inevitable that your product or service will evolve as well. Don’t think in terms of rigidity. You and your business are malleable, and when you embrace that malleability, you will reach and serve exponentially more people.

Veronica N. Cuyugan is the Head of Research and Development at the online magazine The Indie Chicks and is a life coach and founder of The Blissification.

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