The Crazy Bond Between Artist & Entrepreneur

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The music industry has a notoriously high rate of failure – not just for entrepreneurs, but also for artists.

In fact, both groups are pursuing dreams with helaciously bad odds.  And great business ideas – just like talented artists – often fail to break through.

Hey, that’s our little sandbox, but if there’s any place where the stigma of failure’s been defeated, it’s the US.  And more specifically, Silicon Valley, where failure is not only culturally accepted, but oftentimes praised as a stepping stone towards future success.

Which is why the results of a recent survey of entrepreneurs by Citi weren’t entirely surprising.  The group canvassed more than a thousand small business owners, across categories that stretch far beyond music.  And they found a strikingly large amount of optimism, willingness to endure difficult economic situations, and most importantly, a willingness among entrepreneurs with failed startups to do it all over again.  “We’ve also found that many, many entrepreneurs who fail get up and do it again and again until they succeed,” Citi’s Raj Seshadri told Bloomberg Businessweek.

Actually, most of the optimism seemed healthy and rational.  Among active entrepreneurs, more than 86 percent expected 2011 to be better than 2010.  And, a healthy 59 percent planned to simply work harder to drive future success, while large percentages planned to pursue expansions (52 percent) and boost employee productivity (43 percent).

But what about those ready to jump back into the game, against all odds and after horrific crash-and-burns?  There were less stats on that group, though there’s a certain level of craziness and risk-attraction that seems to define this crew.  In fact, it almost seems like a pre-requisite.  After all, most are ignoring the repeated advice of their families, suffering through economic hardships, and signing up for extreme hours, scant sleep, rough road trips, and emotional rollercoasters.   All in pursuit of an improbable dream, or at least an escape from life’s boring, predictable boxes.