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What the San Franciscans can teach us about failure

On the edge of clicking the little blue ‘Publish’ button, I feel a sudden turn in my stomach.  Will people like my post? Am I serving my ideal customers with valuable content?  Does anyone even care? Every single blog post I write (for clients or for my own company) fills me with this same list of […]

property-pr-agency

On the edge of clicking the little blue ‘Publish’ button, I feel a sudden turn in my stomach. 

Will people like my post? Am I serving my ideal customers with valuable content? 

Does anyone even care?

Every single blog post I write (for clients or for my own company) fills me with this same list of fears. 

I know this is a first world problem.

Feeling safe is a primitive human need. ‘But Rachel’, I tell myself, ‘going out of your comfort zone leads to growth’! 

I finally click, and let my thoughts and dreams go out into the online world. Then I jump, hide behind my desk and do my best to get on with client work, whilst secretly waiting to click on how many likes the articles gets on social media. Sad, I know, but true.

So why does basic marketing (after all it’s what I do every day for clients - and what I've done for two decades), have to be filled with such internal drama?

Recently I visited San Francisco. 

After 20 years of work, my husband and I took a month sabbatical (a whole new blog post!).

It’s such an inspiring place to be. Home of the hippies, the tech boom and Silicon Valley.

What I learned there was that failure is part of the city’s culture. 

People aren’t afraid of it. 

In fact, they positively embrace it. 

They start a new project, it fails, they learn, they move on. 

This is why fast growth companies like Uber, AirBnB and Dropbox all have their HQ’s in the San Francisco Bay area.

For a long standing perfectionist Virgo like me, it’s a revelation. 

Here’s what I realise:

That the fear of being perfect doesn’t serve our growth, either personally or professionally. 

Question is, are you letting ‘perfect’ get in the way of your growth? 

Are you stopping yourself shining in PR, on LinkedIn or at events because you’re too scared to fail? 

I’ve come to realise that all the most successful, high profile business leaders often go out on a limb to share what they know. They don't mind getting noticed and being known for what they do best.

I’m trying to do more of this. I really hope you’ll join in the fun at the other side of our comfort zones.

What are your thoughts and stories about failure? I’d love to know, leave a comment below or share this with your contacts.

Rachel Clark is a Director at Wrapped PR. She helps business and property leaders to grow their profile, get more leads and make more sales using strategic communications, PR and social media campaigns. You can follow her on twitter @rachelmclarkpr

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