Happy New Month. Have your ever failed with African fashion? You are not alone. I love the idea of failing because it makes you better prepared for the future. Sure no one plans to fail and I am sure that it hurts more than you can imagine. But I also want to believe that it will only make you strong in the end. Personally, I welcome the idea of learning from failure, but to do so with African fashion, it is important to truly debate the idea of failure so that we do not ignore the more fundamental questions as to why or how failure is important for a successful business in African fashion. Thus, here are my top three reasons why learning from failure is the key to success with African fashion:
- Admitting failure may help to increase the humility, clarity and vision of your brand to your potential customers. Rarely do we hear our designers discuss for example, that a potential fashion collection which they launched, actually did not make any sale. Yes it was lauded and praised by so many people, but that praise did not turn into profits. For starters, I would say to the designer that it is okay to fail and even better, admit that you failed. Admitting that you failed will allow you to seek the perspectives of others, thus framing your debate on failure in a constructive manner that will surely propel you to success in a future outing.
- Future success is a consequence of your reaction to failure. When you fail, are you the type that becomes depressed or the type that dusts it off so as to try again. It is important to realize that failure which is inevitable in many cases may not be due to your lack of attention or your lack of persistence or even your lack of vision. Thus, your emotions following failure matter. Allow yourself to become angry that you failed, but do not let it last past a week or else failure will become your mantra while your potential success will remain elusive.
- Failure is an option. Most of the time people don’s talk abut failure. They instead focus on how to avoid failure. There is also a perception in the fashion industry that demands success the first time and every time. Bur the truth is that it not possible to always avoid failure. Thus it is important to think and talk about what it means to learn from failure. I also think that it is important for upcoming fashion designers to embrace the idea that failure is critical in the intermediate steps leading to the end objective of showing that final collection. Those intermediate failures should be embraced because of it value in pushing you to the end game.