Accepting Responsibility Helps You Grow

Anyone who has ever failed in business and attributed the failure to “bad luck” is unlikely to make much further progress.  When you make mistakes, you need to accept the responsibility for them.


So, for example, if you opened your boutique clothing store one month and then a retail giant megastore opens next door the next month, that is not bad luck, that is your own failure to research.

Sorry to break it to you that way, but that is how you sort the successful from the unsuccessful.  Never make the mistake of equating failure with being unsuccessful.  It is possible to fail and still be successful, if you learn from the experience and use it to become stronger.

Nobody ever becomes an Olympic class hurdler without falling a few times.  Does this mean people will regard the athlete as clumsy?  Of course not!  We respect the fact that they have the courage to get back on their feet and try again.  We also know that each time they fall, they learn something that will help them to clear the next obstacle better.

The idea of failure being a factor in success may seem like a crazy idea.  Talking on the subject,Reuben Singh (famous for many entrepreneurial successes stories such asMiss Attitude, Isher Capital, and AlldayPA) had this to say:

“After more than 20 years in business, I have experienced both success and failure.  Whilst I celebrate them both, I celebrate my failures with more passion.”

How can that be?  And why would a businessman admit to mistakes when it’s not in response to a front page scandal?  It is a matter of understanding that failure leads to success, and I guess more than a little hope that people will become enlightened to a different way of regarding failure.

Britain is suffering from this embedded habit of treating those who fail with scorn and contempt.  Singh points out the difference in the American attitude to failure:

“In America, they won’t take you seriously until you’ve failed in business.  I now understand this. It was because they knew that unless I had failed, I hadn’t learned the lessons necessary to avoid failing in the future.”

Using the lessons of his failures has helped to provide Singh with more success than if he had been the type to dwell on the loss incurred by the failure.  This is what those who attack us for our failures hope will happen… they want you to sit at home, huddled up by the fireplace, lamenting that you’d ever had the audacity to try.

The greatest success is when you have the courage to get back up and try again.  When you believe in yourself enough that you can ignore the babble of angry voices and not give up.

So when you suffer a setback or even a crisis, it is not necessarily the end of the road.  It may just be the beginning of a new journey.  The important thing is to accept responsibility for the error, learn what you can from the situation, and move on from it as a stronger and more confident entrepreneur.

Kevin Kholi

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