06.04.2018 Career & Money

Survivorship Bias Part 1 - Why You Need To Learn From Entrepreneurs Who Failed

By Isaac Sesi
Photo culled from YoutubePhoto culled from Youtube
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Recently I learnt about the concept of survivorship bias.

Survivorship bias is the tendency to focus on "survivors" or "winners" in a certain area rather than "losers" due in part to the fact that those who don't make it are not very visible. Survivorship bias is very common and present in many aspects of our lives.

In business, it means you focus on people or entrepreneurs or companies which are successful rather than those who fail.

I came across this term while studying about startups which failed and trying to learn lessons from their failures. Not many people do that.

There's the misconception that you should only focus on the successful if you want to become successful so we tend to admire successful entrepreneurs and hear their inspirational stories about the things they did right and not study everyone else to avoid the things they did wrong.

You pay more attention to the advice of successful people while ignoring the "not-so-successful" people. It's absolutely natural. Part of human nature.

However, the danger in there your views of these successful people becomes very distorted and you get too optimistic. And when things don't seem to be working out for you, you start getting frustrated.

For every 1 success story, there are 9 failure stories too. In as much as we seek to be inspired by success stories, let's not forget that there are invaluable lessons which can be learnt from failure stories too.

Look out for those and learn from them too.

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