Gartner Research

To Innovate More, Define Failure, Not Success

Published: 14 February 2019

ID: G00375458

Analyst(s): Mary Mesaglio


Successful entrepreneurs would have you believe that if you fail fast, fail forward and fail often, you will get more innovation — and they’re right. But most likely, you’re not a startup, but part of an established organization that probably has a failure-phobic culture. Here’s what CIOs should do.

Table Of Contents
  • 1. Great Innovation Requires Failure. (But You Already Knew That.)
  • 2. Most Humans, Especially the Corporate Kind, Are Wired to Avoid Failure.
  • 3. Not All Failure Is the Same. Some Is Good, Some Is Great, Some Is Bad.
  • 4. Name Your Fears and Seek Out Failure in Small Doses.

Gartner Recommended Reading

©2021 Gartner, Inc. and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved. Gartner is a registered trademark of Gartner, Inc. and its affiliates. This publication may not be reproduced or distributed in any form without Gartner’s prior written permission. It consists of the opinions of Gartner’s research organization, which should not be construed as statements of fact. While the information contained in this publication has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, Gartner disclaims all warranties as to the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of such information. Although Gartner research may address legal and financial issues, Gartner does not provide legal or investment advice and its research should not be construed or used as such. Your access and use of this publication are governed by Gartner’s Usage Policy. Gartner prides itself on its reputation for independence and objectivity. Its research is produced independently by its research organization without input or influence from any third party. For further information, see Guiding Principles on Independence and Objectivity.

Already have a Gartner Account?

Purchase this Document

To purchase this document, you will need to register or sign in above

Become a client

Learn how to access this content as a Gartner client.