You’ll need to learn to cope with loss in order to be a good entrepreneur. There’s simply no way around it. Thomas Edison tried over ten thousand different experiments before finally on 21 October 1879 he demonstrated the first incandescent light bulb. The first company that Bill Gates made, Traf-O-Data, was a failure. Michael Jordan was once quoted as saying: “More than 9,000 shots I missed in my career. I had played almost 300 games. I’ve been trusted 26 times to take the winning shot of the game; and missed it. I have failed again and again in my life. And that’s why I’m successful.’
I’ve struggled more times in my brief tenure as an entrepreneur than I can count. I’ve had my share of success, too, but it’s not even nearly equal. The mistakes far outweigh the successes and I’m confident I’m a lot more in front of me. I’m OK with that because I know I just stopped trying to innovate as soon as I stopped failing. It’s the business nature of being an entrepreneur, and of overall success.
If it were easy, it would do it to everyone. It’s naive to think that any good idea you have will bring about a successful business venture. I still have to hear a businessman say “every single idea I come up with seems to work.” You ‘re more likely to hear something like “I failed in my first five businesses before this one started.”
Think for a second on that. Five Companies. Sometimes the number is three, sometimes it is 20, but the important point is that with their first company, most entrepreneurs do not hit a home-run. It really amazes me-how many people have the stones five times to fail and still start a sixth business? You have to be extremely confident and treat those preceding five times as the sixth learning experience. And if number six fails, you must do likewise and move on to number seven.
The most critical thing I think is how you treat the loss. Once you accept that it’s inevitable, you can learn and move on from your mistakes. Letting the loss overtake you is simple – not so much because you ‘re cynical, but more so because it’s painful to see everything you’ve put your heart and soul into being overlooked or discarded. You need to come to the conclusion as quickly as possible that the company is what they neglect or deny, NOT you. The more you do so, the better you will be able to evaluate critically why you have struggled to know the lessons needed for potential progress.
Failure is not easy and exceedingly frustrating, but it is a necessary part of success. Believe me not? Ask Thomas Edison, Michael Jordan or Bill Gates! Yeah, it may be a little difficult to ask Thomas Edison, but you get the idea