Failure = Innovation

A nice quote I heard from one of the other speakers last week was this:

Reward success, celebrate failure, and punish inaction

Successful innovation, whether it is designing a compelling new product, or completing a technical challenge that gets your product released on time requires failure. Too many organizations create a culture where failure is severely punished, such that a fear of failure leads to inaction rather than a bias towards success.

With ethical and moral failings that damage lives being the rare exception, failure is one more step on the road to success, and truly a necessary ingredient for innovation.



  1. Very true. Unfortunately large corporations (and small companies which for some unknown reason aspire to have the same faceless, cold structure) don’t care about inovation (or frankly anything except profits)

    Plus no one wants to take the responsibility for the failure. Sure like Edison said that he didn’t fail, he just found a lot of ways how to not make an light bulb. But try explaining that to your boss, who in turn has to explain it to his or her boss. Compared to just doing same ol’ same ol’. No one can blame you for anything since you can just say that you did exactly what you’ve always done.

    Sad but true. This is probably why all the innovative stuff is done by new, start up companies instead of the old dogs, even though established companies obviously have a huge advantage, both financially and logistically.

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