Turning a Mess into a Masterpiece, that’s a true depiction of my life story.
My name is Elizabeth Sutton and I am a self-taught artist, designer, entrepreneur and single mother of two, born and raised in New York City. I am the sole founder and owner of the Elizabeth Sutton Collection, a brand which was built on the foundation of fear, hardship and hustle.
My career began four and a half years ago, when I picked up a paintbrush having no previous experience or formal training, and started painting. It was followed by numerous losses and challenges which marked the defining moments of my career. These painful events taught me who I am and what I want to achieve in life, they are the motivators which made me push forward, fight hard and shoot for the moon.
Through my podcast, Success by Design, my goal is to inspire and help women, similar to myself, seize opportunities and use misfortunate occurrences as mechanisms to build strength and achieve dreams.
Success by Design, podcast by Elizabeth Sutton, features entrepreneurs and mentors of mine who discuss topics which are relevant to building strength and growing throughout life.
My first episode, Turning a Mess into a Masterpiece presents Jack Ezon, founder and Managing Partner at Embark, a luxury lifestyle partnership specializing in bespoke travel experiences. Jack is a personal friend, true hustler and team leader.
Learn from Jack and his take on failure.
In what point in time did you realize is it okay to fail?
Failure should refine you and not define you. If you don’t fail, it simply means you are not trying hard enough to reach your potential or to go to new limits. Staying in your comfort zone, sobbing about what could have been, will not get you anywhere. When making big decisions you need to plan to fail, it’s a 50/50 success rate, but if failure scares you, you will never actually try. Failure needs to be embraced as an opportunity to make you successful.
How did you use your biggest failures as your greatest opportunities to help you learn?
My biggest failure was in 1999, I left my job as a lawyer to start a website called Travel Works. Back then it was the Internet boom. My partner got funded almost 40 million dollars to start a .com which was supposed to make us a fortune. Six months into it the Internet bubble burst and the investors’ share dropped leaving us with nothing. This failure was my entrée into the travel industry where I am today.
How do you approach failure as a leader? Which mechanisms do you use for your team?
Failure is a culture I comment with my team about constantly. Every morning we line-up and discuss failures throughout all our teams and departments. It is important to teach people to celebrate failure and talk about lessons which contribute to the greater good of the company, not place individual blame.
Which coping or support mechanism do you put in place for yourself when you’ve failed?
The number one coping mechanism I use is gratitude. I focus on gain and not on grab, on what lessons and opportunities lie before me. Excuses are for victims, victims thrive on excuses, heroes survive on them. I write down my lessons diagnostically. Because there is no such thing as bad days, there are only good days and learning days. Learning days aren’t always easy, but they are meaningful.
What are good tools that you utilize during these hard times (i.e. Coronavirus quarantine)?
I look at this time from a different perspective- the world is on pause for me to catch up. I went to my office and got all the management books I never got a chance to read. I am using this time to learn how to become a better leader, Father and husband. This is my time to thrive, my journey to greatness, because you don’t want to just survive this challenge, you want to build and grow from it.
Keep listening to the rest of the first episode, Turning a Mess into a Masterpiece, episode one from Success by Design, podcast by Elizabeth Sutton, to find out what inspired Jack to work this hard, hustle and become the amazing leader he is today. Also, discover the three pieces of advice he would give someone trying to get back on track from a setback.
Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts. Remember that whenever you feel like you’ve failed.
Keep in tune for episode two, The Power of Social Media on Success by Design, podcast by Elizabeth Sutton.
Connect with Jack Ezon: