Experienced, successful entrepreneurs will tell you that not every idea they have is a success. It is often commonly said that failure is part of being an entrepreneur. Failure is probably not the right term simply because of the negative connotation it carries among the general public. “Further development” is probably a more accurate description of those situations.
Mark Sellers is a successful restaurateur. He is the owner of Grand Rapids, Michigan popular spots like Hop Cat, Stella’s Lounge, and Grand Rapids Brewing Co. But his, other night spot, The Viceroy is going through “further development.” Sellers tried a number of solutions to keep The Viceroy operational including reducing the size of the space it occupied. In the end Sellers has decided to transform The Viceroy into the back room of his neighboring business, Stella’s Lounge. This has included closing he building’s entrance that was to The Viceroy, installing a DJ booth and transforming the décor to match that of Stella’s.
This type of “further development” is not always available to every entrepreneur. Not every entrepreneur owns a neighboring business that has seen a 60% increase in business that can take over operations. What we can learn from this is just because the idea didn’t work does not mean it’s a failure. Sellers stated that he believes that The Viceroy idea was a good one but the location was not right for it. Inventors will tell you that some of their most successful ventures were the ones that were not picked up right away and it took the public or the market their invention was intended for a while to realize the need that their invention served.
Small businesses can be affected by any number of factors. The wrong locations, the lack of visibility, economic times, perception, cash flow issues and so much more can make a business concept infeasible. That does not mean it was a bad idea. That business just needs some further development. More time, a new location, a new look, a new market, or a different marketing campaign are all potential changes that can take what failed and make it successful. The most important thing for new entrepreneurs is to attempt to eliminate those factors that need “further development” before you become reliant on the success of your small business.
Source: “Mark Sellers explains decision to close The Viceroy, expand Stella's Lounge in Grand Rapids” by Gerrett Ellison of MLive.com