Five things I've learnt from observing failure in business
- We shouldn't be ashamed of failure, but at the same time we shouldn't wear it as a badge of honour. Failing sucks. There's this weird Silicon Valley cult of failure – don't buy into that crap, we shouldn't aim to fail.
- In start-ups, failure is the norm rather than the exception so don't beat yourself up. It's not the intended outcome, and clearly you shouldn't be aiming for it, but life goes on.
- If you come out of a failed start-up not having learned anything, you've failed twice. Everything is a learning opportunity.
- It's really hard not to take failure personally, to not blame others or to have failure affect relationships – a good reason not to mix business and pleasure. You know that old saying about doing business with family, right?
- Banks, lawyers and accountants might not be as understanding about your past failures as your technology buddies. Go figure.
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