I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.

Thomas Edison

Today in our strategy class we were discussing the successes of Honda in both the motorcycle and car industries. They had a very interesting culture in their company. The management didn’t really care if you failed at something 1,000 times, as long as you got it right once. They firmly believed that in order to succeed, people couldn’t be afraid of failing. When they first entered a motor into the Indy race cars, the engine blew up. That was in 1994. In 1996 they won their first Indy race. Now they are the sole supplier of engines to the Indy races. How is that for failing and not giving up?

Whenever you fail at something, don’t look at it as a failure. Look at it as an opportunity to learn. That’s what mistakes are for! It really did take Edison over 10,000 tries to get the lightbulb to work. (Depending on who you ask, of course.) He didn’t give up, no matter what the real number of tries was. He kept going. That’s what we all need to do in this life. Keep moving forward. Mistakes shouldn’t freeze us in our tracks. They should provide more motivation to keep going forward.

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