It isn’t a secret; the world we live in today is the result of some of the greatest failures humanity has seen. However, it isn’t the actual failures that resulted in many of the objects, events, and governments that currently make up the world, but rather the attitude of the individuals who learned from the failures. (The apparent oxymoron – “Successful Failures” - is in reality how everything works.)

One of the greatest attributes a person can have is their resilience in the face of failure. Their ability to learn from the events and circumstances is what separates the great from the rest. This isn’t easy to accomplish because of the stigma of failure and the real world results of failing. The stigma of failing is engrained in us from a very young age: Parents scolding us for bad grades, coaches benching us for making a bad play, and even friends laughing at us for spilling a tray in the cafeteria. In most scenarios only two choices are possible; Try again, or give up. Sometimes the pain, in most cases emotional, is what drives either decision.

Great leaders will not only be masters of failure, but will ensure their followers embrace failure. These leaders will motivate others to continue trying, but most importantly teach them how to learn from prior failures and make the necessary changes needed to succeed. (Not changing brings us to Einstein’s famous definition of Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.).  

Great leaders make failure painless, and instead find ways for individuals to ‘love’ the benefits of failure. Thomas Edison summed this spirit up best when he said “I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work.”