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If at First You Don’t Succeed, Build a MODEL T

Henry Ford may have made himself happy with the Model A, but customers did not rush to buy his product. Ford’s selection of features for his Model A, made in 1903 and 1904, resulted in puny success. The sales were just enough to enable the company to continue developing new models. Mechanical problems plagued the Model A, and it took several trials with subsequent models to find adequate solutions for these problems. In addition to that, Ford didn’t know the exact features and cost that the potential customers would accept. He tried one prototype after another, most of them not reaching the production line. The next model that was a moderate success was Model N, followed by Models R and S. The big success was Model T, which Ford released in 1908 and kept in production until 1927. This was the first mass-produced and affordable car that middle-class Americans accepted. Take a lesson from Henry Ford: Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently. As a writer, value your opportunities to begin again—and again. One of these days, you’ll craft your Model T.

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