What We Can Learn From Rejection and Failure

Posted on 06. Jul, 2015 by in Business-building, Sales

We’ve all experienced failure and rejection, in some form or another.  While it can feel pretty discouraging, it is a necessary step for the road to success.

The most alarming aspect about failure and rejection is that it often instills fear and holds people back from taking action.  Without action, nothing happens.  As business professionals and entrepreneurs, you won’t convert every prospect into a client but the more qualified prospects you see (or the more action that you take), the better your chances of success.

Here are some lessons of failure from some of the world’s most successful people:

  1. Walt Disney was fired by a newspaper editor because he lacked imagination and had no good ideas.  Many more of his businesses failed before the premiere of his movie “Snow White”.
  2. Thomas Edison tried more than 10,000 times to invent the light bulb. Later Edison became famous for saying “I have not failed 10,000 times. I have not failed once. I have succeeded in proving that those 10,000 ways will not work. When I have eliminated the ways that will not work, I will find the way that will work.”
  3. Bill Gates’ first company failed.  Even though Bill Gates is the wealthiest person in the world, success was not immediate.  Gates’ first company was Traf-O-Data which reviewed and analyzed the data from traffic tapes.  Gates first tried to sell the processing service to the local County, but his first demo failed terribly.  Despite this failure, Gates and his partner forged ahead and used their passion for computers to start Microsoft.

Robert De Niro most recently delivered a commencement speech to graduates of New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts.  He gave some great advice which is applicable to all entrepreneurs and business professionals:

  • Don’t be afraid to fail.
  • Rejection:  it isn’t personal.  It has very little to do with you.
  • Get familiar with the word: “next”. If you don’t get this acting role, you’ll get the “next” one.
  • Be bold, take chances and above all, take action.

Another way to sum up this article would be to say that: rejection and failure is your roadmap to success.

What are your thoughts?


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