Never be afraid of failures

In 2018, a baby girl who born on Sep 9 got 11k dollars for her name “Harland Rose”. She won Baby Harland Naming Contest (Name your child (born on Sep 9) with not so familiar, the first name of Colonel Harland David Sanders). Some may not be familiar with the name. But we have seen him plenty times in the logo of KFC- a man with a beard in an apron of red and white strips. yes, he is Colonel Harland David Sanders- founder of the recipe and man behind KFC. The reason I share his story here is that we will be astonished by knowing how he overcomes each hurdle in his life, persistently without quitting. He was not afraid of failures and he never gave up his enthusiasm.

  • Left school at the age of 12
  • At 13 left home and tried all kind of jobs
  • While working as railway labourer studied law in  La Salle Extension University
  • Ended law career due to a fight with his client in the courtroom
  • Moved back with his mother and started selling insurance and he was fired for insubordination
  • After so many failures as an employee, he  started doing business at the age of 30 he started a boat company
  • Sold company for starting a lamp company but the venture failed
  • Worked as a salesman- lost job in 1924
  • In 1930 he started his first restaurant (sanders court &café) in front of a petrol station with one table and chair
  • He spotted the opportunity to serve food after so many customers asked if they could get food nearby when stopped for petrol.
  • In 1935- got “colonel” in recognition of his contributions to the state’s cuisine.
  • The business expanded 142 seat restaurant, motel and petrol station.
  • Enrolled a course in restaurant and hotel management at Cornell University to learn more about business
  • In 1939- Due to fire the restaurant was closed
  • In 1940 when he was 50, he finalized the recipe but had to wait for 12 years to franchise
  • In 1952, (62 yrs.)Sanders franchised his secret recipe “Kentucky Fried Chicken” for the first time, to Pete Harman  South Salt Lake, Utah,( first franchise) In the first year of selling the product, restaurant sales more than tripled, with 75% of the increase coming from sales of fried chicken.
  • coined the name Kentucky Fried Chicken. After Harman’s success, several other restaurant owners franchised the concept and paid Sanders $0.04 per chicken.
  • At age 65 closed again- left only with the savings of 105 dollars a month from social security.
  • He devoted his life franchise KFC.
  • Often sleeping in the back of his car, Sanders visited restaurants, offered to cook his chicken, and if workers liked it negotiated franchise rights.
  • In 1963(within 8 yrs.) 600 outlets in the USA, Canada
  • 1n 1964 he sold KFC for $2million with a condition to remain as ambassador.
  • Sanders remained the company’s symbol after selling it, travelling 200,000 miles a year on the company’s behalf (at the age of 74) and filming many TV commercials and appearances. He retained much influence over executives and franchisees,
  • At the age of 90 died. By the time of Sanders’ death, there were an estimated 6,000 KFC outlets in 48 countries worldwide, with $2 billion ($6.1 billion today) of sales annually.
  • Before his death, Sanders used his stock holdings to create the Colonel Harland Sanders Charitable Organization, a registered Canadian charity. The wing of Mississauga Hospital for women’s and children’s care is named The Colonel Harland Sanders Family Care Centre in honour of his substantial donation.

 What did we learn?

Henry Ford said “Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time intelligently”

He proved this with his life. He failed many times and at last paved the way for his success.

A toddler who is trying to walk may fall several times. But he never stops. He will keep on trying and trying until he succeeds. I wonder can we all be like that toddler who is not fearing failures.

Most of the people who have ambitious dreams can’t achieve anything because of their fear of failures. We give up before trying anything.

  • Take challenges- He failed many times but never stopped and keep on taking new challenges.
  • Never give up learning- He always tried to upgrade his skills as per the challenges he took.
  • Find opportunities- He was always prepared. He never stopped preparing and found opportunities for his dreams.

Don’t get depressed, sad or angry. You are never late. Start today. Work for your goal.











Madhu Bhaskaran

Mr. Madhu Bhaskaran is a very famous HRD trainer and Personal Coach in Kerala , South India. Through his 24 years' experience in the capacity building training, he created the spark in more than one lakh people.

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