Regardless of the sector your music fits into — songwriters want publishing deals, recording artists want press and radio airplay, composers want placement in television and film — you have to accept responsibility for the outcome of what happens with every project. When things turn out well, there’s no question who takes responsibility and receives the credit.
Every musician I’ve ever met equates their original material with that of being their child. Parents don’t blame children for bad behavior, being less than perfect, or being irrelevant. The parent searches their soul for what they might have missed teaching the child to help them avoid life’s quandaries.
Great leaders don’t blame everyone else when things go wrong and public failure becomes an obstacle they must overcome. They recognize failure is part of the process. Children don’t grow up without getting into a little bit of trouble. It’s part of their development.
Memorable leaders who achieve legendary status take shortfalls in stride, and keep working. No doubt a controversial but legendary leader, Thomas Jefferson said, “I am a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it.”
Great innovators often take a humorous approach to things they thought would work, but didn’t. Thomas Edison famously said, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”
When a project falls short of expectations, don’t lash out at your management, marketing director, radio promoter, publicist, tour manager or any other person who is doing their best to take your work to its highest potential. If it falls short, there are a million reasons why — they’re called fans.