If you want to succeed in your career, at some point you’re going to have to fail.

Possibly spectacularly so.

Pretty much no one who has ever succeeded in a career has done so without failing at some point. That’s right: rather than becoming discouraged, you’re smart if you recognize the failure for what it is: an essential part of career growth.

How failing leads to later success

  1. You’ll learn from it.

Failing is a powerful teacher. When you fail you truly are given a chance to learn from your mistakes, compelling you to think about what went wrong and thinking about what you could have done differently. You’ll also learn how you can improve. Self-assessment and introspection often lead to insights that will help you move forward in your career.

  1. You’ll build resilience.

You won’t be successful unless you’re resilient. Failing and then returning/sticking to it helps strengthen your ability to handle disappointment and setbacks, which will help you when adversity and challenges come up again (they always do). What’s more overcoming failure will boost your confidence and help make you stronger.

  1. You’ll likely find that you’re willing to take more risks.

Some of our greatest innovations and insights emerge when we fail. When we’re not afraid of mistakes – of failing – we’re more likely to push ourselves beyond what we believe is possible. Ideas and innovation often come when we encourage ourselves to take a chance on something different.

  1. You’ll strengthen your adaptability muscles.

Trying new things – and especially failing at them – will help you become more adaptable to new circumstances. You’ll find that you become more versatile, discovering creative solutions to problems. A failure in one aspect of your career can help you become more open-minded regarding career choices.

Creating success from failure

  • When you make a mistake, try looking at it as a setback, not a failure. Shift your mindset to “learning,” not “disaster.” This type of perspective change can make a huge, positive difference in how you approach future career challenges.
  • Take a close, objective look at your mistakes. What caused it? Are there patterns here? Identifying any underlying issues can help you address them and prevent similar failures moving forward.
  • Ask for feedback from colleagues, mentors and friends. Ask them to be honest and constructive in their critique because they can provide incredibly valuable insights and perspectives, ones which will help you make better-informed decisions in the future.
  • Don’t forget to set goals that will take some effort to reach, but aren’t overly ambitious. If you do have a massive goal, break it up into smaller, more manageable steps. Doing so means you’ll have an easier time achieving these smaller milestones, boosting your confidence and motivation and therefore making it easier to reach your ultimate goal.

Aim to move on from failure

Don’t dwell on your mistakes for too long. Acknowledge your disappointment, give yourself time to process and then focus on moving forward. After all, the only way you truly can fail is to stop trying to succeed.

“Embracing” failure (learning from it) can act as the push you need to grow as an individual and in your career.

Remember, just about everyone experiences a great failure at least once in their lives. What really distinguishes those who become failures from those who feel successful later in their working lives is understanding that failure is:

  • common and inevitable, and
  • a critical step toward success

Don’t fear failure

Instead, welcome it as the learning experience it is and then study it so that you learn from it…and move onto great success in the future as a result.

Debbie’s Staffing can help you find work no matter where you are in your career. Take a look at just some of our current job opportunities and apply to those that appeal to you.

We also recommend that you send us your resume even if nothing looks promising among our current offerings. Why? Because we often fill positions with candidates in our database long before they’re ever posted on our job board.