Fail Quickly


Fail Quickly.

Not all innovations work.  But if you don’t try to grow and innovate, you are committed to stagnation.  So what do you do?  Try, innovate, grow.  If something fails, learn and move on as fast as possible.  Don’t sit and dwell on the failure.  Understand it, use it and then move forward.

Failure is not always bad.  I’ve had some failures in life that, in retrospect, were really only short-term failures.  In the long run, they were steps to success.

Now, I often hear people in sales claim that “every ‘no’ gets me one step closer to a ‘yes’.”   That is not really what I am talking about.  If that makes you feel good, great.  More power to you.  But I don’t agree with that approach.  I think it is too “fluffy” and “rah-rah” without being really practical.  On the other hand, if this approach motivates you, then use it.

The challenge for most people is fear of failure.  Because of that fear, they don’t fail quickly.  Often, they don’t fail at all.  And they don’t succeed either.  They remain where they are and are eventually left behind by those moving forward through failures and successes.

The fear of failure is a common obstacle to improving communication skills.  Public speaking is one of the most common examples of a fear in many people.  Actually, for most people it is not the fear of public speaking, it is really the fear of failure when speaking in public.  There is a difference.  Regardless of this difference, this fear still stops many people from even attempting to improve this communication skill as they avoid what they fear.

However, it is not just public speaking where this fear exists.  It occurs in many other facets of our life, from asking for a job advancement, asking a guy or gal for a date, or asking to close a business deal.

Fear exists for a reason but it should not be THE reason to stop excelling, learning, and growing.  Embrace that smart failures are part of the growth process and, thus, failing is okay.  Fail, learn, move on, succeed.  And the faster you do this process, the faster you will reach your goals.



About the Author

Glenn S. Phillips works with leaders who want to leverage technology and understand risks within. An author and blogger, Glenn is often quoted in national media, plays a really ugly tuba (it even has a bullet hole) and is a fan of dark chocolate and great puns.