Take Arthur Blank, whose personality clashes with his boss at Handy Dan’s, an LA hardware chain, led to his being fired in 1978. Blank’s mother had kept the mail-order drug company his father had founded going after his death when Blank was young, and Blank himself, having witnessed how she overcame adversity, learned to keep trying instead of giving up when things went badly in life. So when an investor approached him, he jumped at the chance to found Home Depot, the no-frills, high-service, huge-selection home improvement chain that has grown to be a retaining giant.
Arthur Blank did not give up, he reacted like an optimist, using the insider’s expertise he had acquired in his years at Handy Dan’s to invent a business that could outcompete his former employer. He saw himself as having the ability to change things for the better. For an optimist, a failure is just a lesson to learn from the next round.