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Moving on from a business failure


Failure is not something we look forward to and we generally seek to avoid it at all costs.  But it certainly should not be seen as the end of things.  “We need to accept that, as entrepreneurs, we are often trying new things and pushing the boundaries.” Says Penny Davis, HR Director at QR.  “The risk of failure is high in these circumstances but what is important is what we can learn from it and how we can move on in a positive way.”

What are the key things we can do to help us to cope with business failures?  Here are Penny’s five suggestions:

  1. Accept responsibility: it can be hard to admit that we made mistakes but, it’s your business, you’re the boss so, ultimately, it is your responsibility.  It is easy to blame your staff, the economy, the government… but this won’t help you to move on.


2. Don’t beat yourself up: yes, accept responsibility but don’t be too hard on yourself.  Just because you made a mistake doesn’t make you a bad person or mean that you cannot ever succeed.


3. Connect with others: don’t isolate yourself if you are having a tough time.  Share your concerns with others, listen and learn from their experiences.  Use your experience to mentor others.


4. Learn from your mistakes: every failure represents a learning opportunity.  Examine what went wrong and what you need to do differently in the future.  Don’t allow yourself to be overwhelmed by the size of the task ahead – break down any problems into small steps.


5. Stay positive: Examine your fears about failure. Put them into context, stay positive and remember it's better to have been in business and failed than never to have been in business at all!

QR Limited trading as QR Ventures
A17 Astra Office Suites, Astra Business Centre, Roman Way, Ribbleton, Preston, PR2 5AP

Registration Number: 04288323. Registered Address: A10 Astra Office Suites, Astra Business Centre, Roman Way, Ribbleton, Preston. PR2 AP. 

QR Ventures is a trading name of QR Limited which is Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The FCA regulates financial services in the UK and you can check our authorisation and permitted activities on the Financial Services Register by visiting the FCA’s website Our Financial Services Register number is 809779.

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