We’ve all heard it….you learn more from failures than success. Failure builds character. Blah, blah.
So I was interested to see what Barry Moltz had to say on the subject in his new book, Bounce! Barry surprised me by getting right to the heart, saying "sometimes failure just stinks." Amen, brother.
His point is that both success and failures are a natural part of a business cycle. The trick is having processes in place to weather the failure…so you can bounce! In the book, Moltz describes the ten business building bands for true business confidence.
Here are a few of my favorites from among the 10:
- Humility — using humility to right size our egos.
- In failure, give up the shame — we actually make our failures worse by being shamed by them and letting that shame dictate how we react and recover.
- Create a measurement system of your own — it’s not about the money. What should it be about for you?
- Value action — get off your duff and do something.
There’s no business book hype in Bounce! He dishes out the straight scoop with some great stories, easy to understand principles and thought-provoking questions.
This book is honest, sometimes brutally so, debunks the "just pick yourself up and learn from your mistakes" cheerleading and offers some real tools for surviving and bouncing back from the inevitable bumps in the road. A very pragmatic, practical read.
I’ve got a free copy of Bounce! for one lucky reader. If you’re interested…shoot me an e-mail with Bounce! in the subject line and I’ll do a blind drawing. (Which actually wouldn’t be much worse than if I drew with my eyes open!).
Whether you win the free one or have to click on the link above to buy a copy — this is a refreshingly honest and insightful book. Well worth the read.
Update: People are asking for a deadline, so I will take entries for the drawing through Sunday, March 2nd and award the book on Monday, March 3rd.
This is a really useful and interesting post.
I do think though that failure (or weakness) can certainly turn out to be real strength (or success) – doing a bit of stretching here I know (not quite what you were saying).
Some of my favourite ad campaigns are based on (perceived) weaknesses in a brand.
My favourite being the Guinness campaign where Guinness was faced with the problem (around 15 or so years ago) that a pint of Guinness was perceived as something your relax over in a quite part of the pub. At the time beer brands had decided that the best way to promote their brands was to associate their beer with excitement (beer being part of an exciitng night out, for example, on a Friday night, in particular, after work).
The problem with the Guinness product is that it takes ages to be poured (obviously not very exciting having to wait at the bar for your pint to be poured).
So what do Guinness (or their ad agency) do. They turn waiting-for-a-pint-of-Guinness-to-be-poured into something intriguing / exciting (‘worth waiting for’). With famous creative ads such as Guinness Surfer (building up the excitement of waiting for the pint to be poured).
Again, not quite what you were talking about. But, hopefully, useful.
Great story — thanks for sharing it. I think it does correlate to the same sorts of challenges and frustrations that Barry’s book alludes to.
The key is to learn, unlearn and relearn and apply quickly. Shorten the cycle of learning and application/execution in your business, you improve your capacity to ‘bounce’ back. It’s like being a fearless kid again and learning how to ride your bike for the first time. You may fall off quite a lot initially but you keep getting back on until you can ride it competently. You basically fail your way to success. The same can be applied in business.
Excellent analogy. I’m going to borrow that one!!