Are you thinking of starting a business? What if I told you that it’s going to fail? Are you going to do it anyway or will you give up before you even start?
Most people give up.
But you don’t have to. You just have to redefine success.
What do I mean by that?
For many people their definition of success is how much money they make, and money is not a good indicator of success.
Because two people can have the same amount of money, for example, a million dollars. But there could be different ways to acquire it. It could be extremely easy to acquire money, or it could be extremely hard.
For one person, for you, it might take 20 to 50 years to make a million dollars while someone else may simply inherit it and not have to lift a finger.
If you look at two people like that, you can’t really say which one of them is successful based on how much money they have. And maybe they are not successful at all, not the first person and not the second.
How do you define who is really successful?
It’s up to you.
Success can mean different things to different people. It shouldn’t be something too easy, and it shouldn’t be something too hard. It should be something that you can actually accomplish.
If you want to start a business, and you decide for yourself that you will be successful when you do that, then simply starting a business will meet your definition of success.
And why shouldn’t it? By starting a business, you will be in the top 10–20 percent of population.
This percentage is high in the US because it’s so easy to start a business here. But if it’s so easy, why doesn’t everybody do it?
Why is it not 50 percent? Why not 80 percent? Most people say they want to start a business, but they don’t actually go through with it.
You cannot possibly be successful if you don’t take action. You must take action as a first step to being successful.
But it’s not enough. What else do you need to be successful?
You might be surprised, but you need to fail. You can’t become successful if you don’t fail.
Michael Jordan missed 9,000 shots and lost 300 games, and yet somehow he’s one of the most successful people we know. How is it possible?
Steve jobs was fired from Apple, but when he returned he made Apple the first trillion dollar company. Again, how is it possible?
Did he fail or did he succeed? Or is it both?
He had to fail in order to succeed. Everyone does. Anyone you look at.
I myself learned the same lesson. I had to fail several times to succeed, but I don’t look at starting a business as failing.
What I look at as failing is when I had a day job, and when I had to work eight hours every day. That’s my failure, not starting a business.
When I started a business, I wasn’t making any money. I was not successful in a traditional sense.
I was not making money, but it didn’t matter because I was happy in other ways. And that’s what matters because my definition of success was to start a business, and I did that.
Now your next step might be to stay in business for one year, and that’s again your definition of success—to stay in business for one year.
You may have heard people say that most businesses fail within the first year.
That’s actually not true. In fact, only about 30% of businesses fail in the first year, and that number keeps going down. It could be as low as 20% depending on the industry.
But 50% of businesses do fail after five years, and 70% within 10 years.
So yes, most businesses fail within 10 years. But even if it happens to you, it doesn’t mean that you yourself have failed.
There are businesses that make a lot of money, millions, billions of dollars and still fail. So it’s not really how long you stay in business. It’s not
how long your business is profitable.
It’s how much action you have taken and how many goals you have achieved that meet your definition of success. As long as you keep meeting these goals, you will keep being successful.
And you’ll have to fail on your way. It is by failing that you can succeed. If you tell yourself that the more you fail, the more you succeed, then you will succeed.
If you look at people who succeeded the most, people you think of as most successful, I’m willing to guarantee that they have also failed the most.
That’s what you need to do. That’s my ultimate advice for every entrepreneur.
You have to redefine success as not a monetary gain, but as meeting a goal that’s not too easy and not too hard, and not many people can achieve, but you can achieve yourself.
And if you fail, it means you’re getting closer to that goal. You’re getting closer to being successful.
The more times you fail, the closer you are to success.