Monday, 03 September 2007 21:00

Failing Forward

You find all of Dr. John C. Maxwell teaching under the menu "Leadership"

What are you afraid of as a leader?  On the top of many people's list is failure.  Is it on your list too?

johnmaxwell2.jpgJ.M. Barrie said, "We are all failures--at least, all the best of us are."  In my 30-plus years of leadership experience, I've come to the conclusion that one of the most valuable but underestimated abilities that leaders can posses is the ability to do what I call "failing forward."  It's more than having a good attitude about your mistakes, and it's a step beyond simply taking risks.  Failing forward is the ability to get back up after you've been knocked down, learn from your mistake, and move
forward in a better direction.

You see, everybody makes mistakes.  But the real difference between average people and achieving people is their PERCEPTION OF and RESPONSE TO failure.  Nothing else has the same kind of impact on people's ability to accomplish their dreams.

What do you dream of accomplishing?  Unfortunately, no matter how gifted or knowledgeable you are, you will make mistakes along the way to your dream.  Failure is the price you must pay on the road to success.  That's just how it works.  But the good news is that the better you are at failing forward, the sooner you can accomplish your dreams.

Before you put away your list of resolutions for the new year, look at the following misconceptions about failure.  Take an honest inventory to determine if your perception of failure is what it should be.  If you share any of these misconceptions, add to your list the resolution to change the way you think about failure.

1.  PEOPLE THINK FAILURE IS AVOIDABLE.  IT'S NOT.

You've probably heard the saying, "To err is human, to forgive divine."  That was written by Alexander Pope more than 250 years ago.  And he was only paraphrasing a saying that was common 2,000
years ago, during the time of the Romans.  Things today are the same as they were then:  People make mistakes.

Published in Dr. John C. Maxwell