038 - Confession: My Biggest Failure in 2023
Learn from my failure so you can better deal with your own failures.
As a business owner, I'm going to tell you something that most never admit.
That thing is failure.
And a fairly big one, at that.
Last year, I launched a program with a small group of clients.
It was a year long mentorship to help people develop an offer and get it launched (or relaunched).
Personally, I think the program content was top-tier.
It's the same system I used personally with a 1-on-1 client this past year and did 6-figures in 6 months.
So, it works.
HOWEVER, this was the failure.
None of the small BETA group got results.
Meaning, they didn't take consistent action and follow the system, therefore they never finished building.
In the past, I've either...
a) Blocked out my failures
This is where I ignore it, bury my head in the sand, and ACT as if it didn't happen.
Sadly, MOST of the online gurus do this. And therefore, you ONLY ever see their wins. They've stuffed their failures deep inside.
This is why people all of a sudden have panic attacks, anxiety, and a whole range of other things. What they've stuffed comes out.
b) Ruminated on it
This is where it's all I think about, causing massive regret and discouragement. So much so, that I would basically disappear for a month or two.
By disappear, I mean, stay away from everyone and wonder "WHY DOES THIS HAPPEN TO ME?", as I binge Netflix and cry (as a grown man).
None of these are beneficial.
They're based on JUDGMENT.
I look at the failure as something EVIL (bad) that I did.
So, I don't want to face it OR it becomes my identity, keeping me from my destiny.
There's a MUCH better way to do it.
It's the way of CURIOSITY.
This is where, instead of seeing it as bad, you see it as something that simply happened. It was part of your experience.
And, it's a TOOL you can LEARN from that will actually PROPEL you into your destiny.
You see, that's the difference.
Did you catch it?
Judging the failure keeps you stuck. Curiosity helps you learn and propels you.
It's a place of humility.
Let's go back to my FAILURE of delivering the year-long mentorship program.
In judgment, I can ignore it, act like it didn't happen. And, go on selling it, even though it definitely needs adjusting.
Or, I can let it take me out of the game. Where, I look at it and say, "I'm just not good enough to lead people and teach people my process. Only one-on-one works."
Yet, I KNOW, without a doubt that God is calling me to teach and lead.
It's my destiny.
Believing that lie has taken me out in the past.
The other way to approach it is through curiosity.
And, this is the framework for this...
1 - Observe
This is where, without any judgement, I objectively look at what really happened.
This curiosity shows me the following...
- We did a live challenge. The challenge was awesome. People engaged. They received a lot of breakthrough.
- We sold 7 people into a "pay what you want" year long mentorship. We were looking for right fit.
- We had plans to start with a certain process, but ended up shifting it to something else. (A disconnect in the journey.)
- There was momentum at first - some quick Spirit-Inspired breakthrough that was really cool to see. (so, not all failure).
- Then, as we continued, it became more of a weekly hangout instead of implementation.
- We noticed, and added a strictly implementation call to help people take real action.
- People took small action, but then they didn't show up to the implementation call.
- There was one (or 2) people that did. One got her webinar outlined, and it was really good. She was ecstatic about it - even though she wasn't one of the original 7. She was added on through another program idea that fell through.
- After that, momentum stalled, especially after the person I partnered with for the program ended up having different leanings and split. Basically nobody showed up and completed action steps.
- There is ONE currently that stays consistent and we're slowly getting the actions done.
This is a simple objective recap at what happened.
There were a LOT of different factors that went into the "failure".
Throughout, I made myself available to help the students 1:1. Only a couple of them actually used what I offered.
Those that did, have momentum, but the results haven't quite caught up yet.
The key to this process is to observe without bias. WHAT REALLY HAPPENED?
2 - Learn
After we have a list of facts of what happened, it's time to ask ourselves (& God) what we can learn from it.
First, we ask the question, "WHAT WENT WRONG?"
- There was a disconnect between the challenge at the start of the program since we shifted it a bit.
This means we had to RESET momentum instead of build on it. Naturally, this made it harder.
Since the PATH shifted, people didn't KNOW where they were going. Lack of clarity keeps people from action.
- The information (while good), was TOO MUCH.
Simply put, we over taught, which overwhelmed people. Overwhelm keeps people from taking action.
- With this, it was TOO complicated for people.
For me, it's easy. I've done it many times. BUT, for someone NEW, what we taught was, again, too MUCH.
It needed to be simplified.
- There was TOO much time between the start and the first clear win.
This also stalled momentum, and kept people from taking action.
- Partially, I also think there was a slight AUDIENCE problem.
We attracted and sold a couple people into the program that were just starting, not as many that were already in a state of momentum.
Naturally, starting from scratch (no audience and no proven product) is WAY harder than helping people build-upon an already successful thing.
All in all, our journey wasn't thought out enough (and clear enough) from the beginning, we complicated the system too much, and we may have attracted an audience that wasn't quite ideal.
Then, we ask the question, "WHAT WENT RIGHT?"
- In the weekly group calls, we did a lot of spiritual breakthrough stuff.
One of the members, specifically, received a MASSIVE internal breakthrough that helped her shift her business and have one of her best months ever.
Interestingly, she didn't use our system to do it. The mindset did it.
- Also, in weekly calls, there was a LOT of "ah-ha" moments that happened when it came to positioning and messaging.
This is something I'm pretty solid in. That was really fun.
- I had a blast helping the one client (that actually got as far as outlining her webinar) make her webinar awesome.
I'm also REALLY good at that.
- The system templates I created (with emails, etc) are really dang good.
I don't know of any better templates that provide a better "gamified" webinar experience.
Again, if we do this without bias, but from a true heart of learning, we'll get the truth about WHY we failed and what actually went well.
3 - Adjust
Next, we get to make plans to adjust and apply what we learned from the "failure".
Going forward, here are some things that I'm doing:
- I'm going to shift my audience slightly to FOCUS on those that already have momentum (their own audience + proven offer).
I know my system is going to get them the most results, the quickest.
- I'm going to keep the weekly breakthrough calls & hot seat calls.
Those are REALLY fun and people leave feeling inspired and in a better mindset.
- I'm going to rethink my full journey to make it as SIMPLE as possible. No extra steps or over-complicated steps.
KISS (keep it stupid simple).
- I'm going to add some clear QUICK wins within the first 30 days that pay for the full program.
- I'm going to focus MORE on community, connection, and accountability.
This means adding fun challenges, incentivizing engagement (people helping each other), and connecting people with each other more personally.
As I take what I've learned and apply it, each iteration of the program will improve UNTIL it's basically IMPOSSIBLE for people not to get results.
That's the goal.
Find one of your failures and and see how you can adjust it to make it something beautiful.
Failure is simply a stepping stone into destiny. But, ONLY if you approach it from curiosity instead of judgment.
The truth is, when you're willing to learn and adjust, people will trust you more.
They'll cheer for you because they KNOW your heart is in the right place.
So, I challenge you.
Face your failures.
Follow the framework in this newsletter and see what comes of it.
A quick recap:
- Objectively observe what actually happened with humility.
- Take time to learn from it, asking yourself what actually went wrong, and what worked.
- Implement a list to adjust the thing you failed in.
Doing this, will help you fail less the next time you take action.
As you keep doing this, you'll fail less and less each time. Until, there is no failure there. Only success.
This is how every truly successful person (with a good heart) approaches failure.
Go do the same!
AUTHOR: Justen Miller
Have you ever expressed yourself in a way where the people around you came alive in some way? That's what moves my life. I love seeing people come alive while giving them a simpler, more joyful perspective on life and business. That's what this newsletter is all about.
Thanks for reading!