The Lessons From Failure

Failure can often be the turning point to eventual success. The accomplished ones are those that learn from these mistakes and acknowledge the lesson within.
Richard Branson from the Virgin Group is among those highly successful business leaders who have overcome failure in his life. He openly admits that he routinely learns from the mistakes he makes. In 1994, he launched his own cola brand and whilst it was flying off the shelves, he believes it was a set up from Coca Cola to buy him out and drive him out of business. Branson says he learned a valuable lesson from the failure and says that he will only go into business where his product or service is palpably better than all other competition, not parallel. Whilst he will work hard to make a business succeed, he is also able to admit when it fails and move on. Maybe it’s those lessons that have made him the fifth richest person in the UK.
The founder of Sony started off with a rice cooker but that business failed when the rice cooker actually burnt the rice.
Bill Gates failed in business before he went on to build his Microsoft empire. Colonel Sanders was rejected by a restaurant 1,000 times before they finally accepted it. Henry Ford’s first two car companies failed and left him broke but he continued to learn the lesson and founded Ford Motor Company which became the first assembly line manufacturer for cars and made him one of the wealthiest men in the world.
Thomas Edison once quoted “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work”.
So if you're still waiting for success, do what these men did and don't give up on the dream but learn the lesson and keep going.
Recognising the mistakes
The first step to take and probably your most crucial is recognising when you have actually made a mistake and acknowledge it.
You can blame all the circumstances against you for the setback rather than admitting that you may have actually done something wrong. If you are repeatedly making the same old mistakes, then reflect on the patterns of those mistakes.  Do circumstances that you have classified as unusual keep occurring? Take some time to reflect on your actions or the lack of actions in order to determine whether you made a mistake, without pointing to blame and reflecting if these uncontrollable circumstances were not conducive to success.
Once you have determined the specific action that made the mistake, ask yourself if this is a bad habit that keeps repeating itself.
Consider looking at both the smaller details and the greater picture when trying to recognise and analyse the problem.
Recognize the mistake, note it, and try to correct it for the future but don't dwell on it and freeze like a deer in the headlights.

Finding the flaw
Think about your goals, whether they are work related or personal and evaluate your strategy, plans and the execution that may prevent you from realising your objectives and reaching those goals.
Were your goals reasonable and achievable or did you overestimate your capabilities and the challenge? Did you make a mistake in creating the plan? Did you even follow that plan?
How would others have approached that plan?
Whilst you don’t need to condemn yourself as a failure, but reflect on how you can learn the lesson and change the cause to succeed next time.
Often we need to ask outside help to realise what we’ve done wrong.

Applying the lesson
Once you have determined what went wrong in the first place that triggered off the failure, then you can start behaving in a different way with a different approach.  You may need to continue making adjustments and correcting other problems along the way.
Then look at the new results. Experiencing success gives you greater motivation to be ruthless with yourself in future endeavours and avoiding repeating the mistakes.

What’s your greatest lesson from failure?