Earlier today I posted this blog about a recent event where social media practitioners shared their success secret. Doug Shaw commented and included the thought that that we shouldn’t only focus on success but should look at failures too.
I agree wholeheartedly. I’ve recently had conversations with the organisers of 2 upcoming events in which they’ve asked for my input on content. There are two things I’ve told them:
- Most attendees will not be from big brands but will be representing smaller businesses with small or negligible budgets. They usually need simple, low budget, easy to implement ideas that will help them get buy in when they get back to basecamp.
- Most attendees will also want to know what went wrong, what was been tried and failed. If you’ve got a sceptical stakeholder to convince this is important.
We can all draw inspiration from the successes of others, but we can also learn from their failures. We don’t share enough lessons learned from failure; maybe it’s a human weakness not to want to admit that decisions we have made have not worked out. Kevin Ball recently blogged ‘Reflect on everything; Regret nothing’ and maybe this is something we need to take out there. As FlipChart Fairy Tales wrote a few months ago ‘The inevitable failure to study failure means that management can never be truly evidenced based‘.
To be fair to the speakers at the Social Success event, they did share mistakes. The event was quite informal and the nature of the format maybe allowed for some more reflective content.
Success is usually a journey and not a destination…in the echo chamber though it’s easy to brush failure under the carpet, to turn it into a joke rather than one backward step along a continuing path.
Should we be sharing our failures more?