Wired UK - May issue

Failure is hip. Well, it’s the cover story on last month’s Wired UK which is pretty good bellwether of having arrived among the trendy trends. The issue even featured the star of business voyeurism and water-cooler buzz at the moment, The Apprentice’s Alan Sugar.

The joined-at-the-hip link between risk taking and entrepreneurship makes it somewhat natural fodder for this digital mavens’ almanac.

Here are a few choice excerpts from the quite comprehensive piece…


“Fail fast. That mantra, in its many guises, is an accepted truism in Silicon Valley. Time is short. Money is dear. Manifest that destiny, or move aside. In San Francisco, failure evangelism has progressed to the point of having its own dedicated annual conference — FailCon.”


Twitter itself was a bit of a side project. You could say it was a mistake that worked out very well for us.”


“Some in Europe, including Index investor Saul Klein, have long been calling for Europe to follow the US example of embracing failure — or at least forgiving it. ‘Failure or bankruptcy is not culturally accepted in Europe, but if we want to encourage the abundance of talent to start and join early-stage companies trying to change the world, we need to accept there will be many, many more flops than hits,’ Klein wrote in a 2007 blog post, which laid the groundwork for the formation of the tech incubator Seedcamp. ‘We need to support failure and encourage people to take the risks you need to think and succeed big.” Fast-forward four years and plenty more European voices are calling for Europe to embrace the constructive value of failure.’ “