<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=349935452247528&amp;ev=PageView&amp;noscript=1">
Search
word-map-thumb

The Alternative Board Blog

Why and How Business Leaders Should Embrace Failure

Feb. 1, 2017 | Posted by The Alternative Board
why and how leaders should embrace failure

 

“Failure” is considered among the worst words (and concepts) in business practices. It connotes weakness, poor decision-making and an inability to ever succeed. But, as Leticia Mooney at Startup Grind writes, “a society that shuns failure and stops making failure acceptable also tends to discourage innovation.

And without innovation, growth isn’t possible.

There are several compelling reasons why CEOs and business leaders should re-examine their notions about failure and embrace new ways of thinking about it. Here are suggestions on how to reframe the concept of failure and leverage mistakes to create new opportunities for growth:

1. Failure involves taking risks, and risk-taking is a good thing. Yes, mistakes can sometimes be costly, but perhaps the real cost is the denial that often comes following a failed enterprise or initiative.

Like just about everyone else, business leaders “don’t like to talk about [mistakes] and bring attention to them,” notes business authors Larry Weinzimmer and Jim McConoughey. It’s more comfortable to gloss over missteps and blunders, but that’s also why “so many leaders have the same struggles over and over again.”

2. Perfectionism can lead to stasis. Leaders often equate “perfect” with “not failing.” But this overlooks the fact that, generally speaking, there’s no such thing as “perfect.” Clinging to a notion of perfectionism can result in a risk-averse culture where no new ideas are ever attempted. And while it’s true that you can’t fail if you never try something, you also can never hope to move forward.

3. Use failure to shift your perspective. CEOs and business leaders often have a “control freak” mindset. If for example, they’ve created a business from scratch, they can point to a fairly good track record of controlling everything so far and succeeding in their efforts.

Want additional insight? Download Hiring a Business Coach for Your Small Business now 

DOWNLOAD

The hard truth is, you can’t control anyone or anything, except how you deal with failure.

“Obsessing over your failure will not change the outcome,” notes leadership consultant Susan Tardanico. “In fact, it will only intensify the outcome, trapping you in an emotional doom-loop that disables you from moving on.”

By shifting your perspective towards the future, rather than past mistakes, she adds, you can escape that negative cycle “and leave these debilitating, monopolizing thoughts behind.”

4. Learn from failure. Every setback offers a learning opportunity, if for no other reason than you now know what not to do in a given situation. In this respect, failing paves the way to new strategies and risk-taking techniques that build on what’s gone before.

When things go wrong, effective business leaders seek out the hard lessons learned from the experience. They are “unafraid of failure,” because they understand that “without taking risks, change and innovation simply aren’t possible.”

5. Failure highlights the benefits of getting outside guidance. Even with the best of intentions, it’s sometimes difficult to escape a cycle of mistakes and setbacks.

In such circumstances, it’s often a good idea to seek a fresh perspective—and that’s where a peer advisory board comes in. In such groups, business owners learn and benefit from mistakes and growth strategies other owners have tried before them.

As members of a TAB Business Owner Advisory Board, for example, members get practical, real-world, tried and tested solutions to the pressing issues every business owner faces—from successful strategic planning to the recruitment and retention of high-performing employees.

Failure doesn’t have to be an ugly or unwanted thing. And it certainly doesn’t have to be faced alone. Find out how having a network of forward-looking colleagues can help point the way to success by joining a TAB Board today.

Read our 19 Reasons You Need a Business Owner Advisory Board

DOWNLOAD

Written by The Alternative Board

Related posts

How to Build Operational Efficiency in 3 Simple Ways
Mar. 2, 2021 | Posted by Phil Spensieri
In order to grow your business, you may have been told to work on your business and not in your business. While this is true and something, I encourage my clients to do, it’s important to remember...
11 Top Business Apps Every Business Owner Should Have
Feb. 25, 2021 | Posted by The Alternative Board
As an entrepreneur, you handle an onslaught of tasks day in and day out. You are often juggling a multitude of jobs. Competing priorities make being organized and focused on the end goal even more...
Tips on Using Artificial Intelligence to Boost Productivity and Profitability
Feb. 16, 2021 | Posted by The Alternative Board
For years now, large-scale businesses have been employing Artificial Intelligence (AI) to help drive productivity and high performance. This same technological advantage is available to small...
14 Ways Business Leaders Can Maintain a Positive Mindset During Stressful Times
Feb. 12, 2021 | Posted by The Alternative Board
To be successful, you need to have a positive mindset. But how do you keep your spirits up when you are a whole year into a pandemic?  COVID-19 has dramatically changed the way we live and work....
5 Tips to Help Remote Workers Feel Like Part of Your Team
Feb. 11, 2021 | Posted by The Alternative Board
Even before the COVID-19 pandemic struck in 2020, a leading trend among businesses was employing remote workers in a wide range of job responsibilities. The trend has, by now, attained something of a...
Employee Onboarding Tips that Help Boost Retention
Feb. 9, 2021 | Posted by The Alternative Board
The effective onboarding of new employees is clearly a benefit to businesses, but some companies persist in “winging it” whenever a new hire joins the team. As we have noted before, businesses that...
3 Tips on Vetting Your Most Promising Job Candidates
Feb. 4, 2021 | Posted by The Alternative Board
It would be nice to think that every applicant to a job opening at your business is always telling the truth in their resumes, during their interviews, and throughout the hiring process....
3 Tips for Rethinking Your Business Model
Feb. 2, 2021 | Posted by Phil Spensieri
One of the important lessons the COVID-19 pandemic has taught many business owners is that business agility is a key component to running a successful business. Business owners are challenged more...
8 Ways to Keep Your Employees Accountable in a Virtual Environment
Jan. 29, 2021 | Posted by The Alternative Board
Remote work is the new normal. In fact, remote work was gaining ground even before the pandemic hit, and with the start of 2021, many IT companies have permanently taken this route. However, there...
How to Measure the Success of Your Team
Jan. 26, 2021 | Posted by The Alternative Board
Having an engaged and high-performing team should be a top priority for every small business. A talented individual is always a big asset, but when you put several such individuals, there’s no limit...