• Business planning and strategy

The upside of failure

Guest Blogger | March 14, 2012

Jean Chow, Business Coach & Strategist, www.msbizwiz.com, @MsBizWiz, Toronto, ON, CYBF Mentor

As entrepreneurs, we seek success. We have an idea, a dream, a vision. But in our search, it is often through failure that we can learn best. Ironically even in failure, we tend to go beyond the limit insofar as betting the entire farm and run the risk of losing it all.

About a month before I was going to lose it all, I had to find a way to break the news to my employees.  They had been with me for twelve years. And now payroll, for the first time, would be late. But I knew they needed to make plans, alternate arrangements, and look for new jobs. There was no way around it. I had to tell them the sad news.

Their reaction caught me completely off guard. They refused to go. They had faith even when all the chips were down and I certainly didn’t have many “chips” either. I remain indebted to them, not for payroll (which I thankfully did make) but for their loyalty, trust, and generous compassion. “Thank you” is simply not enough.