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Is failure a good or bad thing?

People on the East Coast vs. West Coast think of failure differently. Washington sees it as a defeat. Silicon Valley sees it as a path to another chance. Do you think failure is a good or bad thing? Why or why not?


  1. "Failing forward" is an actual term, used in business and other realms, referencing failure as a valuable part of the development process. Fail, learn lessons, try again, theoretically with an improved result. Washington DC (I'm in "Washington" -- it's a state) could learn a thing or two about innovation. I will agree however, the margin for error and failure is much smaller in terms of human services and people's survival.
  2. Failure is a good thing if you recognize it BEFORE it becomes a weight. People can have a good idea, especially because everyone tells them they do, but when it's not succeeding and they don't recognize why it won't succeed on their current path, that failure isn't a good thing.You can learn from mistakes, sure, but you can learn more by accepting something has failed before it ruins you and spending your energy into something that will succeed.Example: 
  3. maybe it's because Silicon Valley has the ability to learn from mistakes and improve on failures whereas Washington (and politicians in general) insist on smashing things they've known will fail all along through the grindstone.
  4. Part of being successful is delivering correctly the first time, every time. I appreciate the Eminem-esque "I couldn't be where I am without going where I was before" philosophy, but it just doesn't resonate for me personally or professionally. The Vince Lombardi "winning is the only thing" school of management is what speaks to me.
  5. I've worked for three start-ups in Silicon Valley. The mentality is when the start-up you're in goes under, you go look for another start-up job. There's big pool of startup talent available that way.Sometimes, when a start up is bought by a larger company, the workers cash in their stock options and quit, looking for another start-up. Big company culture doesn't sit well with a lot of them.
  6. "If you're not making at least 10 mistakes a day, you're not doin' enough stuff."That observation, due either to Tom Peters, or Mark MacCorrmack, should answer for my opinion.
  7. Sillicon Valley is all about innoviation and new ideas, failure is okay and good for creating something new Washington is all about law and follwoing the existing rules Failure is devastating for them
  8. Come on! This is not a black and white question! I view someone failing at a start up business a bit differently as someone who fails a drug test. It depends on what you failed at.
  9. Too much failure cripples you for the rest of your life. I need constant support from my friend Ryan Woodsmall so that I don't lose all hope and remember that from failures from the greatest successes.
  10. My greatest success is actually failing. Can't go on much longer, Glen.
  11. Californians are trying to redefine failure in the vain hope that language can outcompete reality. And as long as everyone else goes along, it can actually work! until some pesky reality intrudes. But really, you ought to be reporting on this as zero-sum vs. non-zero-sum games.
  12. they get more sunshine on the west coast ;)
  13. Failure teaches you what doesn't work, one step closer to figuring out what does work! (From the west coast here)
  14. If it is crushing to the soul, then its bad. If it leaves you with some life, it is good.
  15. That comment and question scream from the same "minds" that lump other situations/disagreements/political BS into "those republicans" vs "those democrats". Make better (smarter!) statements and ask better (smarter, redundant right?!) questions ~ !
  16. Silicon Valley sees it as the Sharks not yet taking the Stanley Cup!
  17. My Midwest mentality can live with failure as long as the consequences are accounted for. Sometimes failure is good, other times it's bad. Take nothing for granted.
  18. Silicon Valley has good PR. There are plenty of hissy fits, finger pointing, and backstabbing when failure occurs here in sunny CA. I'm sure there are reasonable people in DC who learn from their errors. Sometimes there's something to learn from failure, and sometimes it's better to walk away from the wreckage. Depends on the failure and why it occurred.
  19. Most things in life aren't a one-time win or lose type of situation. Those that aren't are an evolution. You test in small scope along the way, keep the things that work, and throw out the things that don't.
  20. Depends on whether it's the same mistake being made over and over again.
  21. Failure as a path to another chance? What a lovely thought for a poster or meme!
  22. Innovative failure = good. Same old, same old failure = bad.
  23. "Opportunity, you miss 100% of the shots you don't take"