Woody Allen once said, “If you’re not failing every now and again, it’s a sign you’re not doing anything very innovative”.

Today, organisations are investing in innovation in this era of digitalisation and disruption. To thrive, management must encourage risk-taking as a critical competency and value in the workplace. It is not easy as some are naturally more risk-averse and prefer the safe approach.

To foster an innovative culture, the management must be ready to make room for failure.

They should take the lead to demonstrate that failure is integral to innovation. It is essential to provide a psychological safe environment for employees to experiment and explore without fear of failure.

Management can encourage both leaders and employees to adopt an enterprising mindset and cultivate a culture which promotes innovation. The key is putting the right people on the right tasks which leverage on their strengths.

In addition, there should be ample resource, space and support necessary for them to succeed.

In times of failure, embrace the outcome together with the team and encourage employees to learn from them. Most importantly, document and transfer the knowledge and experience to improve on future endeavour.

Simply, you don’t succeed without failure.


The above excerpt is our weekly compilation of ideas for business leaders in the areas of people management, leadership, and workplace happiness. 

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