What We’ve Learned about Communicating Failure

Talking about failure is difficult. Here you will find some communication tips that both lead to deeper learning and hopefully keep everyone’s ego intact.

No one likes failure. It comes with real risk and everyone is affected by it and reacts differently to it. Currently, talking about and learning from failure is a luxury for only the most strong and secure. Framing your work as experiments – prototyping and ‘failing fast’ in the name of innovation – is also a rare opportunity for most. And certainly the dogged self-assuredness and supportive environment that lends itself to speedy recoveries in times of failures are advantages afforded to few.

It was in recognizing those challenges that this document was written. These are ideas, suggestions and a summary of what we’ve learned, intended to offer some guidance for navigating these tricky waters. These approaches will not be appropriate for all contexts so feel free to adapt what is here to your needs so that you, your team, and your organization can learn, innovate and build resilience in the face of failure.

The full document is available for download here, What We’ve Learned about Communicating Failure.