Oprah Winfrey opens up on OWN mistakes

Posted at 7:31 PM, Apr 02, 2012
and last updated 2012-04-02 21:58:19-04

(CNN) — Having her OWN network has been more than she bargained for, CEO and media personality Oprah Winfrey said Monday.

After canceling Rosie O’Donnell’s primetime program and conducting what she calls the painful task of laying off 30 of her staffers at the developing network, Winfrey told “CBS This Morning” that the road to developing OWN has been so rocky, that she might even consider doing something different if given the opportunity.

“Creating a network was something that I’d wanted to do. Had I known that it was this difficult, I might’ve done something else,” she told “CBS This Morning” hosts Charlie Rose and her gal pal Gayle King. “I didn’t think it was going to be easy, but if I knew then what I know now, I might’ve made some different choices.”

In fact, “If I were writing a book about it,” she continued, “I could call the book ‘101 Mistakes.'”

For example, one of her top five mistakes was “launching when we really weren’t ready to launch…It’s like having the wedding when you know you’re not ready. When I think about it now, I would’ve waited until I finished ‘The Oprah Show.'”

The struggle of growing OWN has been compounded by negative press, but she’s not throwing in the towel.

“I believe I’m here to fulfill a calling. Because I am a female who is African American who’s been so blessed in the world, there is never going to be a time to quit. I will die in the midst of doing what I love to do, and that is using my voice and using my life to inspire other people to live the best of theirs,” Winfrey said.

“Because a thing appears to not be doing well, because you failed at something – which, we haven’t failed – but because you failed does not make you a failure,” she went on. “And when you know that in the core of yourself, you can keep trying or you can use whatever is happening in that moment to say, maybe I need to move in a new direction.”

As of now, OWN’s “strategy is to do what we should’ve done from the beginning, building one show, one hour, one night at a time,” she added.