Failure

 

YOUR correspondent once interviewed an who said that the biggest difference between America and Europe is that European investors won’t touch you if you have a failed business behind you. In America they won’t touch you unless you have. If there is one thing that distinguishes the most creative, entrepreneurial economies it is this embracing of , the idea that, in ’s words, “ is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.” So, as we reach the letter F in our A-Z of , let’s have a little love for .

“Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. again. better.”
Samuel Beckett, playwright (1906–89, pictured above)

“It doesn’t matter how many times you fail. It doesn’t matter how many times you almost get it right. No-one is going to know or care about your failures, and neither should you. All you have to do is learn from them and those around you. All that matters in business is that you get it right once. Then everyone can tell you how lucky you are.”
Mark Cuban, businessman and basketball team owner (1958–), How to Win at the Sport of Business: If I Can Do It, You Can Do It (2011)

 “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realise how close they were to success when they gave up.”
Thomas Edison, inventor (1847–1931)

“Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.”
Henry Ford, industrialist (1863–1947)

“The secret to being wrong isn’t to avoid being wrong! The secret is being willing to be wrong. The secret is realising that wrong isn’t fatal.”
Seth Godin, entrepreneur (1960–), Linchpin: Are You Indispensable? (2010)

“A failure is a man who has blundered, but is not able to cash in the experience.”
Elbert Hubbard, philosopher (1856–1915), The Philistine

“If you don’t fail at least 90% of the time, you’re not aiming high enough.”
Alan Kay, computer scientist (1940–)

“We have forty million reasons for failure, but not a single excuse.”
Rudyard Kipling, author (1865–1936), “The Lesson”, the Times, July 1901

“The common idea that success spoils people by making them vain, egotistic, and self-complacent is erroneous; on the contrary it makes them, for the most part, humble, tolerant, and kind. Failure makes people bitter and cruel.”
W Somerset Maugham, novelist (1874–1965)

“Fail! Fast. Then succeed”
Wired magazine cover, 2011

Taken from The Economist‘s “Book of Business Quotations

« E is for Economics

 

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