Successful Startups Take Smart Risks and Fail Quickly

Successful Startups Take Smart Risks and Fail Quickly

November 16, 2016

"You can’t know what something is like, how you will feel about it, or what will result from it until you actually are doing it." - key concept of the Fail Fast approach 

You're heard the stereotype: entrepreneurs are big risk takers. Confident that their great idea will turn into a successful business, they're willing to sell their home or quit their job to make their dream come true. According to Ryan Babineaux, co-author of Fail Fast, Fail Often: How Losing Can Help You Win, successful entrepreneurs are a bit more cautious. They learn how to take smart risks. If they fail, they're able to make cheap failures and move forward knowing what not to do in the future.  

Ryan participated in a panel discussion about failure and entrepreneurship during our November TechConnect program, Failing Forward: Using Setbacks to Drive Success. In this excerpt, Ryan talks about key ways to fail smart and fail cheaply.



Test, Learn, Grow

Failing quickly in order to learn fast is at the heart of innovative businesses. They push ahead with a product idea or protoype as soon as possible to gather feedback and learn about opportunities and constraints in order to take the next step. In Ryan's book, he points out that successful people take action quickly, even though they may perform badly. Instead of trying to avoid making mistakes and failing, they actively seek opportunities where they can face the limits of their skills and knowledge in order to learn fast. They understand that feeling afraid or underprepared is a sign of being in the space for optimal growth, which is all the more reason to press ahead. 


Additional Reading

The Power of Failing

Excerpt from Fail Fast, Fail Often 

Glorious Failure: The Joy of Learning from Your Mistakes


Watch the Recorded Failing Forward TechConnect

[Image credit: Pexels]





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