FAILURE STORIES. EP. 04 COLONEL SANDERS

Posted Leave a commentPosted in 4 minute read, FAILURE STORIES
OVERCOMING FEAR OF FAILURE. PART 1

Age is a case of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it don't matter - Satchel Paige

This is a remarkable story of Colonel Harland Sanders. A Man who started at 62 and failed 1009 times before succeeding.  This story is inspirational because it’s an example of how perseverance, dedication, and ambition along with hard work can create success; regardless of your age.

 

Icon

Colonel Harland Sanders has become a world-known figure by marketing his “finger lickin’ good” Kentucky Fried Chicken. He was the founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC). However, most people know him because of his iconic white suit, black string tie and walking cane. His statues are almost all over the world since KFC is present in about 118 countries.

 

Retirement

One of the most amazing thing is that he just started when most of us are already finishing. While most people can’t wait to start being really lazy he started to be really busy. At the age of 62, after running a restaurant for several years, Colonel Sanders retired and received his first social security check for $105. And it wasn’t until the age of 65 when he sold his first restaurant, when he truly started to build his global fried chicken empire.  

 

Biggest Asset

Col. Sanders loved to share his fried chicken recipe and in return people were telling him how much they loved it. This helped him build an incredible confidence and certainty in his recipe. He was determined to sell the world on his delicious chicken secret.  Not having much at his disposal, Colonel Sanders decided to use his biggest asset. Try to think what is one of the biggest assets of most people who are retired? It’s Time. Using that to the fullest he traveled door to door to houses and restaurants all over his local area. He wanted to partner with someone to help promote his chicken recipe. Needless to say, he was met with little enthusiasm.

 

1009 rejections

In those tough times of rejection confidence in his recipe helped him perceiver and be persistent in his hustle. But if he wouldn’t learn from his failures and if he wouldn’t keep on changing his approach it probably wouldn’t get him anywhere. After being rejected many times he started to cook his fried chicken on the spot for restaurant owners. If the owner liked the chicken, they would enter into a handshake agreement to sell the Colonel’s chicken. Legend has it that Colonel Sanders was turned down 1009 times before his chicken was accepted once.  

 

Deal?

The deal was that for each piece of chicken the restaurant sold, Sanders would receive a nickel. The restaurant would receive packets of Colonel’s secret herbs and spices in order to avoid them knowing the recipe. The first restaurant that he landed was based out of Salt Lake City, Utah, which became the first Kentucky Fried Chicken. The restaurant tripled its sales within a year where 75% of that revenue was from the colonel’s chicken.

 

Exit

The company grew and expanded faster than he could have ever imagined. In 1964, at the age of 74 years old, Colonel Sanders had 600 franchises selling his trademark chicken. He sold the company for $2 million dollars to a group of investors led by Jack C. Massey and John Y. Brown Jr. But he retained the rights to the Canadian franchises and stayed on as a salaried goodwill ambassador to the company. In 1976, the Colonel was ranked as the world’s second most recognizable celebrity. This just goes to show us that it doesn’t matter how old we are or just how much money we have to our name in order to accomplish something great.

 

Secret recipe

Did he succeeded because he had proper connections? Did he have the best education? Large capital in the beginning? Incredible marketing abilities? Was he very well situated? Born with any advantages? Was he young when he started? No. None of this is true. There is only one reason for his success. He knew what he wanted and he took massive action.

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FAILURE STORIES. EP. 03 J.K. ROWLING

Posted Leave a commentPosted in 5 minute read, FAILURE STORIES
FAILURE STORIES. EP. 03 J.K. ROWLING

“…Had I really succeeded at anything else, I might never have found the determination to succeed in the one arena I believed I truly belonged” – J.K. Rowling

She is as one of the world’s most successful authors. Many people simply know her as the woman who created Harry Potter. But, what most of us don’t know is what she went through prior to reaching her vision. Her life was not a bad of roses. She struggled tremendously. “I had failed on an epic scale. An exceptionally short-lived marriage had imploded, and I was jobless, a lone parent, and as poor as it is possible to be in modern Britain, without being homeless”. Does it sound easy for you?

 

The Idea

In 1990, Rowling first had the idea for Harry Potter. While she was on a train from Manchester to London fully formed idea suddenly came into her mind. She started a long process of creating a Harry Potter‘s world.  Later that year, her mother died after 10 long years of fighting Sclerosis. 

 

Three Chapters

Two years later she moved to Portugal to teach English. She got married and had a daughter. In 1993, her marriage ended in divorce and she moved to Edinburgh, Scotland to be closer to her sister. At that time, she had just three chapters of Harry Potter in her suitcase. When she finally finished those first three chapters, she sent the manuscript off to publishers but one after the other they quickly turned her down.

“I am not going to stand here and tell you that failure is fun. That period of my life was a dark one, and I had no idea that there was going to be”.

 

Broke single parent

Rowling saw herself as a failure at this time. She was a jobless, divorced and broke single parent. Suffering from depression, she eventually signed up for government-assisted welfare. She was in a very dark place and in a very difficult time in her life but she pushed through those adversities. Failure meant stripping away of the inessential. I stopped pretending to myself that I was anything other than what I was, and began to direct all my energy into finishing the only work that mattered to me. Had I really succeeded at anything else, I might never have found the determination to succeed in the one arena I believed I truly belonged”.

 

12 publishers

Somehow, she found determination and courage to finish her work. She sent it to other publishers, but again, the answer was no. Her mailbox filled up with rejection letters, but she was far from being over.

After sending her manuscript to 12 different publishers and getting rejected by every single one, she began losing confidence in her book.

 

8-year-old girl

A year later the editor Barry Cunningham from Bloomsbury publishing house read the manuscript. And so did his 8 year-old daughter. The little girl loved the opening three chapters so much, that she begged to read the whole thing. This made Cunningham to agree to publish Harry Potter. Bloomsbury made a deal and paid a very small £1500 advance to Rowling. The book was published in 1997 with only 1000 copies, half of which were distributed to libraries. Rowling was given an advice that she should get a day job, because she wouldn’t make any money writing children’s books.  Once Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone was published, she simply proved everyone wrong.

 

107 million copies

The book won many awards including the British Book Award for Children’s Book of the Year. J.K. Rowling herself went from being a jobless single mother living off unemployment benefits to one of the bestselling authors of all time. But it didn’t happen overnight. She faced rejection and constantly strived for success. She worked hard at her craft before anyone noticed her. That practice, along with strengthening herself against rejection, was what made her work unforgettable. Looking back, the Harry Potter series has earned over $400 million in book sales only. With a 107 million copies sold, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone is the 5th  on the list of bestselling books in the history. Rowling is the first female to become a billionaire author.

 

Dream

If you have a dream or a passion and you keep getting rejected or running into failure, don’t let that stop you. If you’re going through a tough time in your life, but you’re working on something you really believe in, don’t give up. If you do, you’ll never know what could have been. Who knows, where you can end up. As is a tale, so is life: not how long it is, but how good it is, is what matters” – J.K.Rowling

 

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FAILURE STORIES. EP. 03 J.K. ROWLING