October 1, 2012

News & Opinion: Being a Leader: Fail First

By: Sally Haldorson @ 2:00 PM – Filed under: Management & Workplace Culture

Fail first for future success. View your failure as an opportunity, not an obstacle.

That's the lesson we investigate in this latest KnowledgeBlocks exploration. We take a look at four books that will first explain why failure is valuable, and, more importantly, how to learn from it. And we'll dig deeper into the question of failure's value, by hearing from naysayers such as Jason Fried who think that this 'embracing' of failure is wrong-thinking. For Fried and others, the more conventional wisdom that success follows success is more true.

But for most of us--and the authors/thinkers included in this exploration, such as J.K. Rowling, Ralph Heath, A.G. Lafley, and Hugh McLeod--, we recognize the need to become friends with failure. Because from a very early age, we are taught that failure isn't just an occurrence, but a character-trait. Failures begin to define us and hold us back from success. So this exploration seeks to resolve that psychological obstacle, promoting a healthier relationship with failure by encouraging people to see failure as opportunities that inform, that teach, that result in future success.

The Wisdom of Failure: How to Learn the Tough Leadership Lessons Without Paying the Price by Laurence G. Weinzimmer and Jim McConoughey

To Forgive Design | Understanding Failure by Henry Petroski

Adapt: Why Success Always Starts With Failure by Tim Harford

Succeeding When You're Supposed to Fail: The 6 Enduring Principles of High Achievement by Rom Brafman
If you want to view this exploration and are not yet a member, here's what it takes to become one!

About Sally Haldorson

Sally Haldorson's job as 800-CEO-READ’s General Manager is to make 800-CEO-READ a great place to work for our employees, and a consistently high-performing customer service organization for our clients, authors, and our partners in the publishing industry. In addition to her General Manager duties ensuring collaboration, integration, and quality, she reads, writes, reviews, curates, and edits for the company. Helping craft The 100 Best Business Books of All Time used parts of both skill sets. Outside of work, she is most likely to be found hitting a tennis ball around or hanging out with her boys (husband, child, dog) at home.