The recent interview with CEO Phil Libin from Evernote provided some great insight into failure! It wasn't until the 6:00 minute mark of a 7:44 interview that a blog post was born.
Mr. Libin explained:
"What's holding back entrepreneur in other countries is that they have a much less healthy attitude toward failure. It is seen as a much more permanent thing. One of the great things America does right is we kinda celebrate it. Failure becomes a good story. As long as you haven't failed for something stupid. As long as you've learned something and can demonstrate what you learned. It's kinda celebrated. It's healthy."
If I would have turned it off while he was talking about the design and where the company was going, I wouldn't have heard these powerful words.
So many times in education, whether it be from internal or external forces, we are taught that "failure is not an option." In actuality, Mr. Libin's comments resonate that it is an option, as long as "it's not for something stupid."
Can we as parents and students, educators and administrators, accept this concept of failing? Failing to the point where it drives us to learn something with a greater intent, create a better product, collaborate more openly, think more critically, and be more creative. This will push all of us to move past the failure into success.
Head Coach Bill Self recently stated after a loss by his basketball team that they were "the worst team ever at Kansas"
Last night, they demolished their instate opponent, Kansas State! Coach Self stated, "We have been so bad for about a week, but the guys showed up (tonight)."
Please allow your son/daughter, student, colleague, or yourself some failure. Let's not "beat each other up or ourselves" for failure. Let's not accelerate to "Defcon 5" Let's determine the path that will be needed to get back to success. Let's celebrate it!
As long as it's not for stupid stuff.