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Speak Like A CEO: Mistakes are as Valuable as Successes

“Experience is the name everyone gives to their mistakes.”

Speak Like A CEO by Suzanne Bates, page 37

If I am starting to sound like a broken record, it is because you have heard me say this no less than a twenty times in the last few months. Mistakes are a good thing. They are not something you seek, but they are not something you shy away from. The word mistake is synonymous with the word failure, and failing remains your fastest way to progress.

There, I said it again.

Click on the book to grab your own copy of "Speak Like A CEO"

Click on the book to grab your own copy of “Speak Like A CEO”

Think back to when you began learning how to ride a two-wheel machine. You did not master the concept the first time you saddled up. And somebody, (probably your mother or father) urged you to continue trying by saying, “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.” Then one day, as if by magic, you started to roll.

Learning to ride a bike is hard enough. Learning how to turn a profit in any business today is challenging. But it is not impossible. All you need to do is follow a proven process, and then learn something new each time you screw something up.

“Don’t be silly, Mike,” I can hear many of you saying. “Our job is to succeed; not to fail.” I agree. But doesn’t it make sense to succeed as fast as you can? And not by luck, but by design? Of course it does. Then you must become experienced.  And as hard as you wish, hope, and pray, experience does not come without a price. It is the result of a great deal of consistent, focused action directed toward a worthwhile objective.

And here is a bonus idea for you (perhaps just a simple reminder): once you get your head positioned in the right place and understand the methods involved, your efforts, whether positive or negative, will begin to take on a life of their own. You will find that you are enjoying the learning process more since you won’t be beating yourself up every time you come up short.

Okay! Many of you have been waiting for this analogy so I won’t disappoint. The hardest thing in sports, according to me, is hitting a baseball traveling at 95 mph with a spinning action causing it to dance on its way to the plate. The very best in baseball fail to hit the “pearl” seven out of ten times. A .300 batting percentage ranks you among the league’s best. And I am just as quick to mention that running a business today is harder than winning the batting title.

Message: Continue to gain experience by making more mistakes. Fail faster, fail more, fail with a purpose but always keep your eye on the ball.


Mike presents a business-building webinar on the third Thursday of every month sponsored by AmaWaterways. To receive monthly invitations send Mike an email with the words “business training” in the Subject Box. You will also receive a link to the recorded version.

For information on Mike’s Fourth Annual Training Cruise, email Mike at mike@mikemarchev.com with the word “cruise” in the subject box.

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