Many first-time entrepreneurs deal in absolutes. It’s easy to understand why, given that one business idea can take years to develop, and longer to get off the ground. Who would think to think that all that effort could go to waste?

But, there’s no getting past the fact that 90% of startups fail. That’s the reality you’re working with. What’s more, few entrepreneurs make a success of the business idea they develop. Again, that’s a fact. The most prominent business people on the market today aren’t doing what they first set out to. Look at Twitter founder, Evan Williams. Before embarking on his big break, Williams focused on a podcasting platform called Odeo. It’s no surprise you haven’t heard of it because things didn’t work out. Yet, Williams went on to produce the most game-changing social media of our generation.

And, Williams isn’t alone. Founder of, Danny DeMichele, started out in online nutrition websites. Sadly, he sold to a company which went under and found himself bust before branching into e-commerce. And, founder of Huffington Post, Arianna Huffington, was rejected by 36 publishers before making her name by writing online.

So, you see, most successful entrepreneurs have failures behind them. Some have more than one. But, what’s the difference between people like these and those who fail altogether? These are determined entrepreneurs who pick themselves up after failure and resolve to do better. What’s more, the majority see the power of learning from their mistakes. To help you do the same, we’re going to look at the two main lessons you can learn from failed ventures.

Know your failures, and use them

When we’re taking a test, most of us sit a test paper beforehand. This allows us to make note of our mistakes, and study further into the subjects we are uncertain of. Think of your first failed enterprise as your test paper. Go back to ‘the wrong answers’, and study better for the real thing. In business, that can mean many things. Perhaps your issue was financial. In that case, you need to get better at trimming business costs, and managing your accounts. If marketing was your downfall, consider how you could do better next time. What went wrong? Did you not use social media? Did you not let an outside company help you? Answering questions like these could see you passing with flying colors in your next enterprise.

Find new ideas in the ruins

It’s also important to find new ideas in the ruins of what’s come before. Most of the time, entrepreneurs don’t stray too far from their initial ideas. Those who want to develop online businesses generally stay in that territory. Often, you may also find that your failure provides the ideal opportunity in itself. You could go on to help other budding entrepreneurs, for instance. If you’re struggling for ideas, it’s well worth looking for a phoenix out of your ashes. The chances are that your new business is right there and waiting.