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Failure Fuels Success
Lauren Heartsill Dowdle | May 1, 2013

Use roadblocks to build up business

roadblockThere can’t be the good without the bad. As true as that may be, wouldn’t we all be better off if things were just a little easier? Maybe not.

In an April , Mark Cuban – owner of the Dallas Mavericks, investor on “Shark Tank,” tech billionaire and chairman of a cable network – wrote about the lessons he learned starting out and how he got to where he is today.

Whether you love or hate this outspoken, controversial businessman, Cuban is the definition of an entrepreneur. At 25, with a terrible boss and a lack of funds, he used his obstacles as motivation and started paving the way to a business empire now worth billions.

It’s those bumps in the road – whether dealing with an overbearing employer like Cuban or working three jobs to pay the rent – that push many landscapers to set out on their own. And the number of entrepreneurs continues to rise, with the green industry employing about 900,000 people and representing nearly 417,000 businesses, according to an market report.

“It’s not about money or connections – it’s the willingness to outwork and outlearn everyone … And if it fails, you learn from what happened and do a better job next time.”

As the pros know, launching a landscape business is no easy task, especially the first few years. I don’t think I’ve ever talked with a landscaper who didn’t mention his early struggles, whether it was financial, marketing or logistics related. But how they overcame these setbacks is what normally brings the landscapers to my attention in the first place.

The late nights, failed bank loans, working from a home office and finding a family/work balance build character and show perseverance, which creates a firm business foundation.

“It’s not about money or connections – it’s the willingness to outwork and outlearn everyone … And if it fails, you learn from what happened and do a better job next time,” Cuban says.

So whether a company is just getting started or it’s raking in millions, the first steps are the most crucial – and probably most difficult. As another man not afraid of hard times once said, “If there is no struggle, there is no progress” (Frederick Douglass).

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