Celebrating success and learning from your failures


These success stories encourage others to continue making the sacrifices necessary to succeed

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What does success look like for your business? Have you defined it? Do you celebrate it? Many business success stories have been told again and again. The success story of Amazon.com is one such story. Jeff Bezos started by selling used textbooks to university students. I was one such student.

These success stories encourage others to continue making the sacrifices necessary to succeed. Any business success, no matter how big or small, deserves to be celebrated. When a business turns a year older, it is time to celebrate. When a team completes a project, celebrate. When a team member goes the extra mile for the customer, celebrate them. Saying "thank you," writing "well done," buying someone a present, taking them out to lunch, sharing their achievement with others, or creating a formal award and recognition programme are all examples of ways to celebrate someone.

Success is something to be cherished because it motivates everyone. What success story will you share with your team today? How will you celebrate success moving forward?

Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft, once said, "It's fine to celebrate success, but it is more important to heed the lessons of failure." Sometimes, individuals, teams, and businesses experience failure. These failures become an opportunity for us to learn and grow.

We fail to retain a customer or a member of the team. We may fail to hit our revenue targets. A marketing campaign or a new product may fail. A business may fail in totality. All these failures become lessons in what we need to do differently.

Major failure

Some businesses have reinvented themselves or their products after failures. The 1985 New Coke launch was one such major failure that made Coca-Cola bring back its original Coke three months afterwards.

We can choose to learn from our failures as well as those of others. If we learn more from the failures of others, we get a head-start. For example, some businesses took time to adapt to technological changes, and it became quite difficult for them to survive.  These businesses become a lesson to others. Most of us have heard of the ‘Kodak Moment’.  Initially, the ‘Kodak Moment’ was about getting ready for the perfect photograph to memorialise an occasion. After the digital revolution bypassed Kodak, the “Kodak Moment” was also used to refer to Kodak’s failure to realise that its strategy was no longer effective in a world gone digital.

 In the business world, there is no success without failure. We must therefore be more open to looking out for both success and failure. By celebrating success and learning from failure, we become better!

Dr Kiruthu is a Management Consultant and Trainer. Connect via Twitter: @KiruthuLucy


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