Two of America’s greatest inventors, Charles Kettering and Thomas Edison, embraced the same philosophy, which allowed them to take in stride what others called failure, and build upon it.
Kettering said: “I failed forward to success. An inventor fails
999 times, and if he succeeds once, he’s in. He treats his failures simply as practice shots.”
Thomas Edison said “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work. I don’t get discouraged, because every wrong attempt discarded is another step forward. I failed my way to success.”
Henry Ford took a similar approach: “Failure is only the opportunity to begin again more intelligently.” And Malcolm Forbes said, “Failure is success if we learn from it.”
Thomas Watson, Sr., founder of IBM, understood the close relationship between success and the willingness to fail. “If you want to increase your success rate,” he said, “double your failure rate.”
Finally, take it from Michael Jordan: “I’ve missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. Twenty-six times, I’ve been trusted to take the game-winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeeded.”