3 projects that didn't work and why.
“Failure is a detour, not a dead end street.”
The purpose behind this blog in 2016 was to showcase every single part of the journey. The highs and the lows. The successes and, yes, the failures.
The idea for this particular post was actually a suggestion from a friend and one that I hadn’t even thought about, but now I think about it, am not sure why it hasn’t happened yet!?
For context, this is not about jobs, this is about projects that I have come up with on the side of my paid work. Although I would be happy to walk through my job choices and journey if this is something you would be interested in as a follow up? Leave a comment!
For further context, I am constantly full of ideas and “oo wouldn’t it be fun if”s, so for the sake of your time I have picked three projects that have been brainstormed, carried out for longer than three months and never really took off as hoped. (Because I could give you a list so long it would look like an Andrex puppy ad).
#StepInMyOffice - named so because ‘Look In My Office’ was taken on Instagram, this mini Insta-project was started off the back of some research I did as part of an internship in 2016. ‘Digital Nomad’ was still a very fresh term (not ghosted by the Insta algorithm) and working from coffee shops still considered a pipe dream for many. As Enterprise Communications Coordinator, I created a showcase space for people to discover new places to work. From Costa in Southampton to the corners of Shoreditch and transport in between, it was fun to showcase the ways that people could successfully work. Why did it fail? It didn’t fail so much as fizzle out as a fresh and naive face in London trying to run before I could walk. Certain contracts required me to work in the same office and with personal commitments to coaching at the time, I wasn’t willing to spend the extra time on such a project. This and paying for coffees each time was not justifiable for my situation at the time. I had a lot of fun creating this content but, even now, I just cannot give it the love I think it deserves. Silver lining? While the Insta account no longer exists, occasional updates can be found in the #StepInMyOffice highlight on my Insta profile. Plus anything that gets added into there is always tagged in the Story with the hashtag.
#InspiredBy - some of you may remember in the first year of HMW, #InspiredBy was created. A platform created by bloggers to inspire bloggers in a world post-Brexit, post-Trump’s election and also the 2017 Westminster attack. Created from Instagram and Facebook posts with inspirational quotes of encouragement, the first month to six weeks started strong. The first event was held and 11 people attended. It was a success!
Why did it fail? I took a £100 personal hit after the first event because I was careless with money and didn’t check the fine print. Which, in a time when £100 to my name was a luxury, meant I just wasn’t willing to take another risk in that way. At the time, I was also scared to commit to a project and keep going. (Trust me, a year of HMW was a ginormous personal achievement!). One other piece of advice I would give on this note is not to let your personal life get in the way of projects. Nothing dramatic happened, however I let it take over to such a point that when I finally wanted to reboot #InspiredBy, there was no real interest anymore and someone else had created a new and shinier option. Silver lining? Having actually taken riskier projects on since, I have finally found some gumption. It takes a certain mindset and, honestly, plain old practice to see things through to the end. It’s not always easy, but the other side is that much finer. Seeing some other blogger entertainments appear and disappear has given me food for thought though and I’ve got a couple of concepts up my sleeve I’d be curious to try in 2019.
HMW shop. This is a funny one. While this hasn’t been a massive failure, it hasn’t quite taken off like I had hoped for. This is in part down to me moving a couple of times when it was launching as well as me letting other things getting in the way again, plus, to tell you the truth: fear. The fear of taking a monetary risk again. Another factor for why this didn’t quite take off in the strongest way was also down to a self-help audiobook by Andrea Hess that I listened to which completely changed how I saw my goals and the future I want to create for myself. Whereas previously I was looking at the shop as just a way to make more money, I was now looking at it as a way to contribute to people.
So the silver lining here is that it has again given me food for thought about a direction it could instead take in 2019. And hey! It was a huge leap in my own personal journey, stepping up to bring to life a project I had thought about for a while.
So there you have it! Three projects that didn’t work and why.
The funny thing is that, while I was writing this, fresh ways to see these projects came to mind. So who knows!? Maybe, they’ll make a comeback down the line with a fresh lick of paint…!
I’d be curious to hear your thoughts though. Was this helpful to read? Sometimes we forget that it’s ok to “fail”. If we didn’t try, we would never know and spend a life possibly wondering, which in my mind is worse. Plus, failures make for some of the most meaningful lessons.
What projects were you thinking of starting?