Endurance was the topic at a recent graduation ceremony I attended where the speaker encouraged the students to not give up despite failing. He explained that failure was an opportunity to learn, grow, and do better reminding them of a number of leaders who failed but endured:
- Colonel Sanders of Kentucky Fried Chicken had his secret chicken recipe rejected over a thousand times before succeeding at the age of 65.
- Frank W. Woolworth started the Woolworth Company (now Foot Locker), his boss did not allow him to wait on customers because Woolworth "didn't have enough common sense to serve the customers."
- Fred Smith while a student at Yale University presented a business idea to his business management class that received a nearly failing grade. The idea was for a parcel service that could deliver packages overnight. Smith ignored the grade and founded FedEx.
- Rowland Hussey Macy, between 1843 and 1855, opened four retail dry goods stores that all failed. He learned from those mistakes, and hit it big with his next store in New York City, Macy's.
- Walt Disney was fired by an editor because, "he lacked imagination and had no original ideas." His first animation company went bankrupt and it's said that he was turned down hundreds of times when he sought financing for Disney World. The Walt Disney company makes average revenue of U.S. $30 billion annually.
There are many more examples of people who endured despite their many failures, they remained persistent, opened to opportunities for improvement, capitalized on the positive feedback, disregarded the naysayers, and endured. It is in the most difficult of moments that your character, integrity, and values are tested, refined, and perfected. Stay true to who you are, opened to endless learning, and faithful to the one who will never leave you or forsake you, our Heavenly Father. Endure! Just a little advice to go!