Failure: The Secret to Success

The ability to recover from a failure is essential in order to be successful. But what if you have never failed?

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Suzanne Lucas, on her blog at, discusses how new generations of graduates are too used to being successful, to finding things easy, which can lead them potentially to collapse when things get out of their comfort zone.

People who only know success simply lack the skills to deal with failure or complicated situations.

While managers naturally try to hire the brightest, those who are effortlessly successful, we must take into consideration that they can be very difficult as collaborators. They believe that because they were exceptional in the past, they still are today, and take any assessment to the contrary negatively, rather than learning from it and improving.

And when the first failure occurs (which is not a matter of "if" but "when"), these individuals are not able to recover, because they do not know how to.

To achieve true success is to know what failure is and how to recover from it. And that means taking risks, getting out of your comfort zone, listening to others and admitting to what areas can be improved upon.

Arguing over the result of a negative assessment instead of learning from what the boss is saying is a key indicator of an unwillingness to learn.

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More on this topic

Enough Complaining: Four Attitudes for Success

October 2011

Success is not a destination but a journey without end, which requires a positive attitude, team playing mentality, a mindset for continuous improvement and responsible outlook.

With over 20 years of experience as an executive of IBM, in the ever turbulent business environments of Latin America, the engineer Enrique Baliño says the success is not a destination but a journey without end, and that successful people have to develop four key attitudes: positivity, team playing, continuous improvement and accountability.

The Quest for Status

August 2011

We can be better leaders if we understand that unconsciously, as humans we will always seek to increase our status in society.

This need has existed since prehistoric times. According to researcher David Rock, from the time that humans started living together in groups, increasing their status has been as important as getting food.

Management Development Test

November 2010

The successful career of a manager goes through 5 stages. Check not to be anchored in one of them, it can prevent career success.

Maturity as a human being begins with childhood, then as teenager, youth, and finally adulthood is reached. Many people get stuck in one of these stages; those people can be described as immature.

Men and Women Work Differently

July 2010

And managers would do well to take this into account to get the best performance possible, from both women and men, when they are working remotely.

Everybody knows that men and women have different ways of thinking and working. According to Sally Helgesen, it is especially worth remembering this when managing teams working remotely: “Managers who don’t appreciate those distances can do themselves, their companies and those employees a great disservice”.