You’ve probably noticed the same thing as me.
There is success all around us and, as a society, we love to celebrate success. Think about social media. It’s really just a collection of everyone’s highlight reel sent out into cyberspace hoping to get a little positive affirmation.
We also love a good rags-to-riches success story.
Like J. K. Rowling for example.
She went from living on welfare to becoming the world’s first billionaire author.
We love stories like this because it helps us imagine that one day, if we get lucky, maybe we might become the next rags-to-riches story.
But, what about failure?
We don’t like to think or talk about our failures.
We purposely hide our outtakes and our blooper reel from the world.We purposely hide our outtakes and our blooper reel from the world. Click To Tweet
We fear failure. It’s embarrassing and discouraging when we fail. We feel like a loser in a world where everyone else is winning.
The problem is that failure gets a bad rap. It’s actually more important than success.
Let me explain.
Consider this. Between 2004 and 2006, at the height of auto-maker Toyota’s success, it recalled more vehicles than ever before. They learned the hard way that success leads to complacency.
We need failure.
We need it to learn, grow, and to provide the fuel to propel us towards our goals.We need failure to learn, grow, and to provide the fuel to propel us towards our goals. Click To Tweet
Even the great J. K. Rowling was rejected by 12 different publishing houses before Bloomsbury finally accepted her stories.
Think of this quote that is often attributed to Winston Churchill (although he never actually said it):
“Success is not final. Failure is not fatal: It is the courage to continue that counts.”
Failure is not the problem.
Our response to failure is. It’s the courage to continue that counts.
I recently had Colonel George Milton on my podcast and we spoke specifically about failure. He took a life of failure and built an amazing career in leadership.
He is a highly decorated combat Army veteran who barely graduated from high school. The story of his early struggles and how it provided fuel for his success is powerful.
He never let failure stop him and he was eventually inducted into the United States Army Officer Candidate School Hall of Fame.
Listen in to this episode and learn how to harness the power of failure.
P.S. If you haven’t followed me on Instagram yet, you should. You’ll get a little more “behind the scenes” view of what it’s like to lead a manufacturing business.