The BEST Lab presented the first Mercier Seminar Series event of the year on October 22nd. The Director of the BEST Lab at Lassonde, Dr. Andrew Maxwell, was pleased to welcome his colleague and friend, Dr. Shlomo Maital, Academic director of TIM-Technion Institute of Management, Israel. Dr Maital is an industrial engineer who teaches entrepreneurship to eager young engineers who are confident their new ideas are the latest and greatest, which was certainly reflected in the audience, the eager minds of Lassonde.
There are many successful entrepreneurs idolized in the modern technology era, each one attributing their success to hard work, sleepless nights, and a mentality of putting success above all else. However, these entrepreneurs are notoriously known for burning out their questionably shrewd business practices, yet their praises and success are viewed as modern day hallmarks of entrepreneurship. Dr. Maital’s seminar focused very little on their successes though, because the modern truth of entrepreneurship is that success teaches you only one way to accomplish your goals and accounts little for chance. The real teacher of success is failure, which both Dr Maital and Dr Maxwell teach their students. Failure teaches an entrepreneur the many things that don’t work, and also provides a frame of reference, and perspective.
How do you teach failure though? Dr. Maital teaches us that it is entirely in the mindset of an entrepreneur. To not only accept your failures, but value them as lessons. Don’t fear failure, get it over with – fail fast and move onto the next iteration, a more experienced iteration. If you can overcome your fears of failing you can start now instead of what many prospective entrepreneurs think – that there’s a perfect time when it’s guaranteed to work, the risk is inherent to the task.