April 14, 2013

Failure - it's ok. No, really.

This is something I have heard from a lot of sources, but something I never truly believed until recently. I thought this was just some corporate jargon to help make suits feel better about blowing money, coming up with bad ideas, and not reaching their goals.

Growing up I heard two contrasting messages: failure is not an option, and everyone deserves a trophy. This made it difficult to understand what a failure is, and how to deal with it.

The idea of failing fast and failing often was not something taught in art school. However, this entrepreneurial lesson is not lost on me. I’ve been criticized for not being able to foresee failures, and now I realize that if I could foresee them, I’d never learn anything. I would never progress, and I’d be a fairly dull person. As I have grown in business, and watched projects succeed and sink, I realize that fear is the only real failure.

Fear stifles creativity, and creativity is one of the things that differentiates a great idea from a good one. So, I have learned that I am ok with falling on my face, as long as I have pushed the envelope and fearlessly went after something I believe in.

So my friends, I hope you fail. Fail better next time.