Are You Afraid of Making Mistakes, Learn From Others

Thomas Edison tried thousands of different materials in search of a filament for the light bulb. When none worked satisfactorily, his assistant complained, “All our work is in vain. We have learned nothing.” Edison replied very confidently,

“Oh, we have come a long way and we have learned a lot. We now that there are thousands of elements which we cannot use to make a good light bulb.“

Wait… you do not have to make all the mistakes yourself. You can learn from the mistakes of others. That is why you are not the first person going that route. Some people have gone that route before you. Whatever you want to do in life, you will surely find someone who has done it before or someone who has done something related to what you set out to do. Your responsibility is to study their story to see how you can avoid their pitfalls and then apply your lessons to your situation.

Some years back, I joined 3 other guys to setup an ICT company. Each of us had different skill sets which we aimed to harness. We were bringing different values to the company. We set out to offer quality and affordable services. The start-up phase was great. We completed our company registration with the Corporate Affair Commission and got an office space which was renovated. Each new day brought us enough reasons to believe that the company was meant to be real.

Within weeks, we got some contracts to setup local area networks and internet services in some companies both within and outside Lagos. On a particular occasion, we got a contract to supply 50 computer system units to a company. It was a dream come through. Things were working as planned. The god of business was really smiling at us. Suddenly, we lost it. Within one year of existence, the company collapsed. It was like a dream but it was so evident that something was missing. Something was wrong with the company structure we had put in place.

Our technical skill sets failed us. We did virtually everything wrong. Then, it hit me that you need more than technical skills to run a successful business. You need a combination of so many skills. I learnt my lessons and I do believe the other 3 learnt theirs also. The whole experience was a very painful way to learn but I am glad I took that step at that phase of my life. You miss a lot of opportunities by not acting. The steps you did not take today because you are afraid of mistakes may be gone forever. I am glad to let you know that you are not shut out forever, and that there is a goal you still can reach. Start today…Dare your fear and take those steps.