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Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.

Winston Churchill

Photo by Smithers of Stamford

A few weeks ago, I was in a conversation, where the topic of failures and starting fresh came up, and lots of people agreed that the most admirable people are those, who can start from zero and navigate their way to success after having been through a rough time.

Many were surprised, when I voiced my opinion, saying that I don’t think there’s such a thing as starting from zero.

In my opinion in every new situation there will be something familiar, where we can use at least some of our previous experience or knowledge.

When my partners and I opened the travel agency that I was the CEO of, before that I didn’t have any experience of being a director. I’ve never managed a company, never prepared a business plan beforehand, and never interviewed employees earlier. I also did not take any partners or clients from my previous employer, because I thought that would be unfair and unprofessional.

So, you could say that I was starting from zero.


I already knew how to build new partnerships, relationships and I used this experience in the new company.

I knew how I envisioned our quality of service, how we be able to keep our customers, and I also had loads of new ideas on how I wanted to develop the business.

I knew what my strengths were and how I could achieve results through these.

And I had my curiosity with me, which helped me ask the right questions that needed to be asked in order to build what I wanted to build.

I was using a lot of the experience and knowledge I collected earlier, and I integrated these in the new situation, and this meant I wasn’t starting from zero.

So, there’s no such thing as starting from zero, when you look at it carefully. (At least I can’t think of any situation right now, where I would think this to be true).

You might be building a new business.

You might have a new role in a brand-new job.

You might be the newly appointed team leader of the team you’ve worked with for years.

You might be dreaming about a new career, which you’re afraid to jump into.

But you’re not starting from zero.

You’re actually taking with you:

  • Many years of experience.
  • Loads of knowledge.
  • Numerous skills.
  • Many ideas.
  • Your own resources, your own strengths, which helped you achieve results previously.
  • Your creativity, passion, responsibility, attention, flexibility.
  • And a thousand other things.

Ok, what else? 😊

So, it’s important that you are aware of all that you’re taking with you, all that you can build on in a new environment or new situation.

Bill Gates and many others believe in the benefits of coaching and will advise you to get a coach.

As they say, getting feedback from someone, whose only interest is in your growth and development, is essential. Coaching is the one tool, which can help you become aware of all that you have, whatever situation you may be in. A well-trained coach can help you see your values and how to show them to the world.

Come on, I invite you to work together with me, so that you too can become aware of all that already have, and to help you find solutions to your challenges faster.

In the meantime, write a list of what you can integrate from previous experiences to a present situation, what skills, knowledge and values?

And if you wish, send it over to me. 😊 I’ll be happy to read it.

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