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If you want to learn about failure, read about somebody else’s


Embracing failure is the backbone of the American Dream. Although this executive, believes the UK works differently.

Ask most successful tech entrepreneurs, and the majority of them will have failed.

It’s the likely outcome in a business ecosystem where 9 in 10 startups are destined to fold.

Many suggest that embracing failure is a good thing. And at a White House initiative launch called ‘Startup America’ back in 2011, one attendee gave an impassioned speech arguing that failure is the embodiment of the American dream.

Obama himself echoed this idea, saying that “entrepreneurs embody the promise of America: the idea that if you have a good idea and are willing to work hard and see it through” that you are able to succeed. It provides the foundation for a pervasive mode of thinking that has guided entrepreneurs and hopefuls since the early 1930’s.

Embracing failure is the best course of action. We are told.

Because naturally as a society our gaze heads toward the successful, often forgetting that in such a competitive society, for every successful person, there are thousands (perhaps millions) that fail.

But failing isn’t a bad thing. We are told. Embracing failure is the best course of action. We are told.

“But, I have to say” begins the CEO, author and pianist David J Brown “I don’t really share the same view.”

“I’d rather learn from my own successes, and if you want to learn about failure, I would read about somebody else’s.”

“I would say to entrepreneurs, make sure you do get advice. Do get equipped, and do the reading, understand everything.”

Brown read the companies act after being given it by a friend, and believes for UK entrepreneurs at least, it is essential reading. It provides entrepreneurs with the tools required to really get to grips with how businesses work.

This way, the likelihood of entrepreneurs having to embrace failure will be significantly reduced.

“I think it [failure] is only ever anecdotally sweet, or interesting, and the American seem to love saying, he failed 3 times before he made it, what a great guy…but over here [UK] I don’t think failure is something to aim for.”