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7 Ways Companies Can Harness Failure to Drive Success

Today's growth companies need to recognize failure as a necessary component of learning and learning as a necessary component of success

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Academic institutions have banished the f-word, and it needs a revival. I’m talking about failure.

Today’s students are increasingly under the impression that if they fail just one course or test, all hopes of attending their desired institution, being hired for their dream job and making something of themselves will, in an instant, disappear.

Perfectionism among teens has increased significantly since the 1980s, according to research from the American Psychological Assn. Author and researcher Brene Brown defines this phenomenon as “life paralysis,” referring to all opportunities we miss because we’re too afraid to put anything out into the world that might be imperfect.

Related: Why Entrepreneurs Should Plan for Failure, Not Success

Let’s fast-forward 15 years to those very students, those perfectionists, who have now graduated and moved on to the working world and are running the very companies we work for. They are creating hiring rubrics, performance evaluation frameworks and  presentations. They are defining what success looks like, and within this definition lies no room for failure.

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