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15 Ways to Stay Resilient and Beat Failure

15 Ways to Stay Resilient and Beat Failure

Ask The Entrepreneurs is a regular series where members of those involved in the Young Entrepreneur Council are asked a single question that aims to help Lifehack readers level up their own lives, whether in a area of management, communication, business or life in general.

Here’s the question posed in this edition of Ask The Entrepreneurs:

Entrepreneurs are known to be resilient people who fail fast and fail often. Where does your ability to get back up come from?

1. Know the Statistics

    Growing up, my dad told me, “Nine out of every ten businesses fail within the first five years…which means you have to s tart ten businesses.” That sentence, and the knowledge that he’d support me even if I fail nine times, has made all the difference in the world.

    Sean Johnson, Digital Intent

    2. Learn From Each Failure

      As long as you’re learning from each “failure,” it’s not really a failure. My advice: keep a record of all of the lessons you learn as you go. In our business, we use Basecamp to record our big course corrections and lessons learned. It’s always eye-opening to look back over the notes and see the twists and turns over the months and years. Keep a record and you’ll see how far you’ve come.

      Pete Kennedy, Main Street ROI

      3. Watch the Olympics!

        Watching men and women who are the best in the world fall, fail and get right back up is my inspiration. They train harder and longer than anyone and still have setbacks. Knowing that you’ve done your best and can pick up and start again is a great model. Even those athletes who fail to place can come back and win gold!

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        Kelly Azevedo, She’s Got Systems

        4. Stock Up on Support

          Surrounding yourself with other entrepreneurs, change makers and, by general rule, with people that are smart er than you can be a great help. There is always someone else who has been through a similar struggle, and sharing experiences and resources will help you both deal with failure and rise back up to success.

          Christopher Pruijsen, Letslunch.com

          5. Don’t Be Afraid

            Mark Twain said, “Do the thing you fear most and the death of fear is certain.” If you’re afraid of failure, start by putting yourself out there for something small where the failure won’t hurt as much. With practice, the failure will become easier to handle, and your fear of it will lessen.

            Allie Siarto, Loudpixel

            6. Revert to Your Mission

              When there are setbacks or challenges in the day-to-day, I find that our mission brings me back to focus on progressing. It showcases the importance of having a strong sense of the value of your business; whenever times get tough, referring back to it is invigorating.

              Doreen Bloch, Poshly Inc.

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              7. Inspiration — and Desperation

                When you learn to burn the bridge and take the island, you don’t give yourself any option but to succeed or die trying. I’m driven to take risks by inspiration and, in the event I fail, I get back up driven by both inspiration and desperati on. I’m inspired to make a difference for myself, children, family, clients and world. Desperate to stay alive, to succeed and, yes, desperate to try again.

                Charles Gaudet, Predictable Profits

                8. Not Getting Back Up Is Worse

                  To me, the idea of the consequences as a result of not getting back up are far worse than admitting the failure and giving up. Imagining that I have to wake up and drive to a 9-to-5 cubical job with florescent lights has been one of the biggest mental images underlying my motivation for success.

                  Nick Reese, Elite Health Blends

                  9. Take Advantage of Every Opportunity

                    If you’ve been lucky enough in life to be given an opportunity to make a difference, then not taking every possible advantage of that chance is failing. If you get the chance to take a pitch, how can you not swing?

                    Derek Flanzraich, Greatist

                    10. Maintain That Trust

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                      I trust that the universe always has my back and I look at every situation as an opportunity to learn and grow. I trust that I’m always where I NEED to be, even if that’s not always where I WANT to be.

                      Natalie MacNeil, She Takes on the World

                      11. Salute the Sports

                        From the time I started walking, I had a baseball bat in my hands. Honestly, I was never interested really in business until my senior year in high school, but my entrepreneurial foundation was built on the playing field. As a baseball player, you can not get on base 70 percent of the time and be a success. But to get a hit 30 percent of the time, you still need to step up to the plate.

                        Trevor Mauch, Automize, LLC

                        12. Adjust Your Perspective

                          Failure helps shorten the curve to success. When you realize something isn’t working, it allows you to revisit your strategy and shift directions. Think about it like this, would you rather walk through a maze endlessly, not knowing if you were on the right track, or run into a wall and know you’ve got to change direction? Relentless optimism is an entrepreneur’s best friend.

                          Raoul Davis, Ascendant Group

                          13. School of Hard Knocks

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                            I grew up painting houses with my dad. Money was always tight — for a couple months in high school, we literally lived out of a van. Life was tough, but I was always dreaming big; I always believed that my suc cess was in my control. When I get knocked down now as a CEO, I remember those days, and I remember that success is a choice, a commitment, a lifestyle. I simply choose to get back up.

                            Glenn Clayton, Appleton Learning

                            14. Keep Sweet Emotion

                              You have to believe in what you’re doing. It’s part intellectual and part emotional. When you fall, that emotional part makes you fall harder, but it’s also what helps you get back up and keep going.

                              Melissa Kushner, goods for good, nonprofitshare

                              15. Because You Have To

                                I do it because I have limited options. As an entrepreneur, you seldom have the luxury to sit around, sulking and crying. You are the master of your own destiny, and your desire to reach your goals should be your most powerful tool.

                                – Nicolas Gremion, Foboko.com

                                Featured photo credit: Top view of businessman holding his hands up to temples via Shutterstock

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                                1 How to Find New Growth Opportunities at Work 2 20 Critical Skills to Include on Your Resume (For All Types of Jobs) 3 The Best Interview Questions to Hire Only the Elites 4 How to Find a Mentor That Will Help You Succeed 5 15 Smart Ways to Approach Interpersonal Relationships at Work

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                                Last Updated on August 20, 2019

                                How to Find New Growth Opportunities at Work

                                How to Find New Growth Opportunities at Work

                                Career advancement is an enticement that today’s companies use to lure job candidates. But to truly uncover growth opportunities within a company, it’s up to you to take the initiative to move up.

                                You can’t rely on recruiter promises that your company will largely hire from within. Even assurances you heard from your direct supervisor during the interviewing process may not pan out. But if you begin a job knowing that you’re ultimately responsible for getting yourself noticed, you will be starting one step ahead.

                                Accomplished entrepreneur and LinkedIn Co-Founder Reid Hoffman said,

                                “If you’re not moving forward, you’re moving backward.”

                                It’s important to recognize that taking charge of your own career advancement, and then mapping out the steps you need to succeed, is key to moving forward on your trajectory.

                                Make a Point of Positioning Yourself as a Rising Star

                                As an employee looking for growth opportunities within your current company, you have many avenues to position yourself as a rising star.

                                As an insider, you’re able to glean insights on company strategies and apply your expertise where it’s most needed. Scout out any skills gaps, then make a point to acquire and apply them. And, when you have creative ideas to offer, make it your mission to gain the ear of those in the organization who can put your ideas to the test.

                                Valiant shows of commitment and enterprise make managers perk up and take notice, keeping you ahead of both internal and external competitors.

                                Employ these other useful tips to let your rising star qualities shine:

                                1. Promote Your Successes to Your Higher-Ups

                                When your boss casually asks how you’re doing, use this valuable moment to position yourself as indispensable: “I’m floating on clouds because three clients have already commented on how well they like my redesign of the company website.”

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                                Tell your supervisors about any and all successes. Securing a new contract or signing a new customer should be a cause for celebration. Be sure to let your bosses know.

                                2. Cultivate Excellent Listening Skills

                                Listen well, and ask great questions. Realize that people love to talk about themselves.

                                But if you’re a superb listener, others will confide in you, and you’ll learn from what they share. You may even find out something valuable about your own prospects in the company.

                                If others view you as even-minded and thoughtful, they’ll respect your ideas and, in turn, listen to what you have to say.

                                Check out these important listening skills: 13 Powerful Listening Skills to Improve Your Life at Work and at Home

                                3. Go to All Office Networking Events

                                Never skip the office Christmas party, your coworker’s retirement party, or any office birthday parties, wedding showers, or congratulatory parties for colleagues.

                                If others see you as a team player, it will help you rise in your company. These on-site parties will also help you mingle with co-workers whom you might not ordinarily have the chance to see. For special points, help organize one or two of these get-togethers.

                                Take the Extra Step to Show Your Value to the Company

                                Managers and HR staff know that it can be less risky – and a lot less costly — to promote from within. As internal staff, you likely have a good grasp of the authority structure and talent pool in the company, and know how to best navigate these networks in achieving both the company’s goals and your own.

                                The late Nobel-Prize winning economist, Gary Becker, coined the term “firm-specific,” which describes the unique skills required to excel in an individual organization. You, as a current employee, have likely tapped into these specific skills, while external hires may take a year or more to master their nuances.

                                Know that your experience within the company already provides value, then find ways to add even more value, using these tips:

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                                4. Show Initiative

                                Commit yourself to whatever task you’re given, and make a point of going above and beyond.

                                Position yourself so that you’re ready to take on any growth opportunities that present themselves. If you believe you have skills that have gone untapped, find a manager who will give you a chance to prove your worth.

                                Accept any stretch assignment that showcases your readiness for advancement. Stay late, and arrive early. Half of getting the best assignments is sticking around long enough to receive them.

                                5. Set Yourself Apart by Staying up on Everything There Is to Know About Your Company and Its Competitors

                                Subscribe to and read the online trade journals. Become an active member in your industry’s network of professionals. Go to industry conferences, and learn your competitors’ strategies.

                                Be the on-the-ground eyes and ears for your organization to stay on top of industry trends.

                                6. Go to Every Company Meeting Prepared and Ready to Learn

                                A lot of workers feel meetings are an utter waste of time. They’re not, though, because they provide face-time with higher-ups and those in a position to give you the growth opportunities you need.

                                Go with the intention of absorbing information and using it to your advantage — including the goals and work styles of your superiors. Respect the agenda, listen more than you speak, and never beleaguer a point.

                                Accelerate Your Career Growth Opportunities

                                A recent study found that the five predictors of employees with executive potential were: the right motivation, curiosity, insight, engagement, and determination. These qualities help you stand out, but it’s also important to establish a track record of success and to not appear to be over-reaching in your drive to move up in your company.

                                Try to see yourself from your boss’s position and evaluate your promote-ability.

                                Do you display a passion and commitment toward meeting the collective goals of the company? Do you have a motivating influence with team members and show insight and excellence in all your work?

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                                These qualities will place you front and center when growth opportunities arise.

                                Use these strategic tips to escalate your opportunities for growth:

                                7. Find a Mentor

                                With mentorship programs fast disappearing, this isn’t always easy. But you need to look for someone in the company who has been promoted several times and who also cares about your progress.

                                Maybe it’s the person who recommended you for the job. Or maybe it’s your direct supervisor. It could even be someone across the hall or in a completely different department.

                                Talk to her or him about growth opportunities within your company. Maybe she or he can recommend you for a promotion.

                                Not sure how to find the right mentor? Here’s How to Find a Mentor That Will Help You Succeed.

                                8. Map out Your Own Growth Opportunity Chart

                                After you’ve worked at the company for a few months, work out a realistic growth chart for your own development. This should be a reasonable, practical chart — not a pie-in-the-sky wish list of demands.

                                What’s reasonable? Do you think being promoted within two years is reasonable? What about raises? Try to inform your own growth chart with what you’ve heard about other workers’ raises and promotions.

                                Once you’ve rigorously charted a realistic path for your personal development within the company, try to talk to your mentor about it.

                                Keep refining your chart until it seems to work with your skills and proven talents. Then, arrange a time to discuss it with your boss.

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                                You may want to time the discussion around the time of your performance review. Then your boss can weigh in with what he feels is reasonable, too.

                                9. Set Your Professional Bar High

                                Research shows that more than two-thirds of workers are just putting in their time. But through your active engagement in the organization and commitment to giving your best, you can provide the contrast against others giving lackluster performances.

                                Cultivate the hard skills that keep you on the cutting edge of your profession, while also refining your soft skills. These are the attributes that make you better at embracing diverse perspectives, engendering trust, and harnessing the power of synergy.

                                Even if you have an unquestionably left-brain career — a financial analyst or biotechnical engineer, for example — you’re always better off when you can form kind, courteous, quality relationships with colleagues.

                                Let integrity be the cornerstone of all your interactions with clients and co-workers.

                                The Bottom Line

                                Growth opportunities are available for those willing to purposely and adeptly manage their own professional growth. As the old adage says,

                                “Half of life is showing up.”

                                The other half is sticking around so that when your boss is looking for someone to take on a more significant role, you are among the first who come to mind.

                                Remember, your career is your business!

                                More About Continuous Growth

                                Featured photo credit: Zach Lucero via unsplash.com

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