Seth Godin Linchpin


Yesterday was Worldwide Linchpin Meetup Day. Seth Godin initiated a series of ‘Meetups’ around the world. Essentially, the event was another networking social (as opposed to ‘social networking’). Having been to a range of these affairs from First Tuesday to eCademy, I particularly pleased with this one. Maybe something about the common appreciation of Seth’s business wisdom draws together a particularly engaging and amiable crowd (big thanks to organiser Mark Walmsley).

It turns out Seth is a big fan of embracing failure and he has penned a number of pieces in his ace blog…

“How to Fail”

“There are some significant misunderstandings about failure. A common one, similar to one we seem to have about death, is that if you don’t plan for it, it won’t happen. All of us fail. Successful people fail often, and, worth noting, learn more from that failure than everyone else.”

“Here are six random ideas that will help you fail better, more often and with an inevitably positive upside:”

  1. Whenever possible, take on specific projects.
  2. Make detailed promises about what success looks like and when it will occur.
  3. Engage others in your projects. If you fail, they should be involved and know that they will fail with you.
  4. Be really clear about what the true risks are. Ignore the vivid, unlikely and ultimately non-fatal risks that take so much of our focus away.
  5. Concentrate your energy and will on the elements of the project that you have influence on, ignore external events that you can’t avoid or change.
  6. When you fail (and you will) be clear about it, call it by name and outline specifically what you learned so you won’t make the same mistake twice. People who blame others for failure will never be good at failing, because they’ve never done it.

“The privilege of being wrong”

“Being wrong isn’t fatal, it’s merely something we’d prefer to avoid. We have the privilege of being wrong. Not being wrong on purpose, of course, but wrong as a cost on the way to being right. As you gain resources, the act of being wrong goes from being fatal to annoying to a precious opportunity, something that you’ve earned. You won’t advance your cause or discover new truths if you’re obsessed with being right all the time–and so the best way to compound your advantage and accomplish even more than you already have is to set out (with relish) to be as open to wrong as often as you can afford to be.”