It can be daunting to think business again after your business fails, but it’s doable. According to bizcommunity, an average of about 50% of startups fail within the first 24 months of operation – in that time, a regular entrepreneur could’ve come up with hundreds of other viable (at least in theory) business ideas.
In this artice:
Nobody wants to imagine themselves relating to or experiencing business failure, but the harsh truth is many entrepreneurs fail a few times before they get it right. It has happened to some of the most successful entrepreneurs in the game. There are many reasons attributed to why so many startup businesses fail, but that’s a heavy topic for another day. In this article, we look at things you should do following your immediate business failure.
Take a break
One of the first things you need to after your business fails is to take a moment, not to reflect yet, just to breathe. Those who’ve started businesses that ended up failing (at first) will tell you that it hurts. Businesses are to entrepreneurs, what a career and/or job is to professionals. It’s your baby, your treasured basket full of all your best eggs, it’s what you love and live to do and pour a lot of your hopes and energy into. So when you lose it, you want to make sure you take a moment to try and relax your mind and ease your heart into accepting it so you can move on.
It’s vital for you to remember not to take business failure personal. You didn’t fail, your business/idea did.
Reflect on what went wrong
If you skip this part, the chances of your next startup being an immediate raging money machine are slim to nil. If you never know what went wrong, how do you hope to do better?
Once you feel you’re ready to reflect, start at the very beginning. Ask yourself these important questions to inform your next move.
- What are the risks that I took and did they pay off individually? How about as a collective?
- What did I have doubts about doing that proved my gut right?
- Did a lack of experience contribute to my business failing?
- Did I take on too much responsibility when in reality I needed help from someone like a partner?
- Did I devote enough time and/or attention to my startup?
- Did money-management contribute to my business failing?
- Should I have secured funding before launching?
- Did a pricing or monetization issue contribute to my business failing?
- Did a product/service delivery or customer service issue contribute to my business failing?
- Did an issue or circumstance I had no control over affect my business?
Reinvention is the direct translation of “change the plan, not the vision.” For instance, say your dream is to own a high fashion label but your first fashion business doesn’t work out so well. It involves solutions like name or brand change, a new target market, new products, etc.
Reinvention in itself is a major task, so don’t approach it thinking it’ll be easier than starting a new business altogether. In our article, titled Reinventing your business we talked about this in detail.
Starting over after your business fails
Once you’ve settled on whether you simply need to tweak a few things in your previous business model or whether you want to start a completely new business, it’s time for a new start.
Entrepreneurs have too many ideas than they have time for. So becareful not to fall into the trap of rushing on to the next idea too quickly simply because “it’s there” without doing any research on or considering important factors like market environments, pricing levels and your other businesses, commitments or a job that demands a lot of time and attention in your life.
Finally, always remember, not all battles can be won but you need to believe in and work smart towards winning those that can be won. The ultimate test of learning from your mistakes is successful solution implementation. Be intentional about making productive changes to the way you did things before and it will pay off eventually.