HISTORY is written by the victors, but ironically the truly victorious are often loquacious about their failures. Whether this introspection is vital for success, or a public offering to Fortuna for her gracious helping hand, the readiness with which many successful business people are willing to discuss their setbacks provides plenty of practical advice – as well as inspiration – to struggling entrepreneurs.
However, learning to accept your own business failures and get up fighting isn’t enough. Like success, failure needs a path. That is why the exhortations of Silicon Valley’s greats offer a direction of travel: fail often; fail fast; fail cheap; fail forward; fail better.
On this page, esteemed entrepreneur Richard Farleigh, will weekly be confessing his successes and failures over the coming weeks. From trading desks and hedge funds he retired at 34 and morphed into a business angel – backing more UK early-stage companies than anyone else. His insights will be both invaluable and entertaining in equal measure.
Another entrepreneur from the Dragon’s lair, James Caan, has a new book out: Start your Business in Seven Days. It’s a no-nonsense guide on how to get going. It’s all about the direction – is short and simple with the aim to appeal to every sort of entrepreneur. It’s not Eric Ries’s The Lean Start-up, but it echoes its critical messages of getting the right idea, testing the business model properly and experimenting – and succeeding or failing quickly.