‘What have you got to offer our company?’ ‘Well I have been involved in a couple of failed businesses.’
Perhaps not the kind of conversation you would expect in a management recruiting interview, but research shows almost a quarter of companies actively seek managers who have experienced business failure and recovered. The thinking is that executives who have learnt from past mistakes are likely to make more astute entrepreneurs.
Some see this as a significant cultural shift. Traditionally we in the UK feel uncomfortable with failure and would rather hide it than disclose it, but in America, failure is seen as a natural part of business life and in the right circumstances a distinct advantage.
Perhaps we are becoming more like the Americans in our approach to entrepreneurship.