How to handle failure in your business


“Win as if you were used to it, lose as if you enjoyed it for a change.”

                                                                                                                                –Ralph Waldo Emerson

In the world of work, all that begins well need not end well. Budding entrepreneurs get themselves into a state of real tizzy despite their promising startup-ideas. Spunky entrepreneurs try their best to reach a tradeoff between investments and profits. However, there is something endearing to entrepreneurship-‘Expect the unexpected things to happen.’ Resources, both monetary and non-monetary may be exhausted. In addition, finance may dwindle to a trickle. As a consequence, entrepreneurs soon find themselves in a hole. The sharp vicissitudes of fortune will question the veracity of existence of startups. In a nutshell, the unforeseen circumstances may get the better of potential startups. So, what’s the next course of action?

 Handling Failure

Here are a few promising ways to handle failure in your business:

  1. Decide the immediate course of action:

Stay calm and think fast. Do not take decisions in haste. Analyze the situation. Use your best judgement and seek expert advice. To be precise, decide the immediate course of action. For instance, you may opt for Plan-B conspicuous in your business plan. If it were for otherwise, you may sell your company and embark on a new entrepreneurial journey with the same patented idea. However, this is an extreme step.

  1. Do not risk what you can’t afford to lose:

Here is an excerpt from Quora- Mike Sellers, a serial entrepreneur opines, “Do not risk what you can’t afford to lose. In other words don’t put yourself in a position to be unable to feed and shelter yourself
When trying to get or keep a company going, you have to keep two contradictory concepts in mind at the same time: you will work with unbounded determination on your company to make it work — but when it reaches your threshold, you are 100% prepared to walk away.  Doing both is not easy. You can’t let up even a tiny bit until it’s time to let up completely; you are totally committed until you’re in danger of making the mistake of commitment bias — at which time the commitment vanishes. Being able to do both may be part of the special insanity that entrepreneurs have.”


  1. Learn from the failure and emerge stronger:

Here is a recent example- The IPL match fixing scandal proved to be a sword of Damocles to Rajasthan Royals franchise and its team members. However, Rahul Dravid, the batting great said, “Our greatest glory lies not in failing every time, but lies in emerging every time we fail.” To all intents and purposes, this virtue of Rahul Dravid has made him the undisputed gentleman of cricket. Well, by drawing an analogy, here is the key takeaway- handle failure in your business by learning from the failure.

  1. Cultivate the essential attitude:

You are doomed if you think you are. So, all in all, your perception matters a lot. Cultivate a positive attitude. Remember, Thomas Alva Edison failed ten thousand times before ending up great. The only ideation that kept him motivated is –“I have not failed. I have found ten thousand ways of not succeeding.”

  1. Be professional and never take anything personal:

Well, a nerve-jangling failure should never affect your personal life. Stay professional, both in letter and spirit, policy and execution. This clearly implies that embracing defeat is an essential attitude to cultivate. Play your cards well with panache and let the failures know that you are stronger than them.

Before I draw the curtain close, here are a few wise words of counsel from my own experiences- Entrepreneurship demands a lot of blood, toil and sweat. It is easier envisioned than executed. Use your intellect to do away with the brinkmanship games of your competitors. Snuff out the failures and set the deal on a remarkable entrepreneurial journey. Handle failure in your business with a smile!

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