Embrace your failure and learn from it and move forward and you will never worry about success
A few years ago, I would have shied away from talking on ‘failures’. But, having sailed through it multiple times, I now realize that failure helps you to become a better version of yourself, making you a better business person, and accelerating your own personal growth.
‘We think smooth flow of life is growth, yet when adversities strike, that’s when real growth actually happens.’ In short, failure teaches you faster than success does.
Failure is seen as a villain in our lives, whereas it should be respected and acknowledged right from childhood.
One of my first encounters with failure happened very early in life, I was just 19 then. I failed in the same subject which had earned me the title of district highest, just the year before. Stricken by malaria and having moved from vernacular medium to English, were the reason behind my failure. Obviously, I was dejected and heart broken. I was feeling so bad that I called up my dad and cried my heart out. That’s when he made me realize that it wasn’t a question mark on my skills, knowledge or understanding of the concepts, rather it was a result of certain circumstances, the language in which I needed to communicate, and my illness. All of these had struck me together, leading to the disappointing result. This incident taught me a valuable lesson, that failure doesn’t make you any lesser of a human being.
When it comes to entrepreneurship, failure is considered as a massive dent on a person’s capabilities or career. I think it needs to change for good. I have a failed business project behind me now and I wear it like a badge of honour.
If I hadn’t failed in the business earlier, I wouldn’t be running Ridhani the way I am running it today. Today I know how important it was to fail, then. Off course, I felt terrible then, when I retrospect I understand how necessary it was to have gone through that to be where I am today and who I am, right now.
The business failure taught me three major lessons and helps me with my judgement of decision making, sensibilities and acumen now.
One, I always thought startup world would be easy, which off course was NOT easy. Today, it helps me question myself and others whom I mentor. ‘You want to get into the startup world, are you aware of the realities of it? And if yes, are you game for it?’ Metaphorically speaking, start-ups are for the ones who love and enjoy roller coaster rides, full of ups & downs and plenty of thrilling experiences. Entrepreneurship is a rollercoaster ride of high emotions which can give best Bollywood emotional flicks a run for their money, crazy laughters and tears, fun of doing creative stuffs and the disappointments of unable to make it, success celebrations and failure mournings, all rolled into one. On the contrary, if you are a person who likes a smooth and steady life, just like the lazy river rides, start-ups may not be the right choice for you. My sincere advice is to learn about what you love to be the most, and what you love to do the most, before taking the leap of faith.
Second, I learnt how to make the right decision and investments in the business. My mistake was to invest the money in areas that didn’t need investment. It could have been better utilized in other areas of the business. I could have still had my first start-up running if I had made better decisions.
Third and not the least, focus on your first stakeholders – your customers. Running behind investors is probably not a wise thing to do at the initial stage, something that I learned in due course of time. Your own customers will take care of your investment needs if your offering is great.
All in all I would say ‘Embrace your failure, and learn valuable lessons from it to move forward’ and you will never have to worry about success.
Experience Contributed By :
Srijata is an entrepreneur, author, speaker and growth coach. She is the founder of Ridhani, a fashion retail start-up for women, which helps them create their own unique workwear outfits online or offline. Prior to Ridhani, Srijata founded another start-up, EthnicShack. With 10 years of experience in corporate world and 5+ years in entrepreneurship, Srijata has worked with MNCs like ESPN, Consim Group and Sulekha.com before taking a plunge into entrepreneurship. She’s featured in various publications including The Hindu, Deccan Herald, YourStory and Citizen Matters. She’s also an author of an upcoming book due for release in 2019, and two published anthologies to her name