The Long and Winding Road: Will you just Fail, already!

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No, seriously I want you to…. because I want you to succeed.

We have all heard of the ‘fail quickly’ theory where we take an idea in a raw form and act upon our initial thoughts and try to implement the idea as soon as we can. 

The result is an intense period of focused attention to detail and real-time adjustments to make the idea robust. At the end of this process we should have a refined idea which is fit for purpose.
Try to do that, even 15 years ago, and you would be shown the door. Failure was and still is, in some areas, considered an absolute ‘no-no’. It is OK ‘standing on the shoulders of giants’ to see the future but be careful not to do that on someone else’s dime. As we morph from bricks and mortar to the digital universe we also are morphing into the abstract thinking realm, leaving the concrete thinking behind. If you want to see concrete thinking in action, try to get investors from the recent past versus investors from this ‘digital native’ mindset. When your business understands stock levels and logistics better than the three dimensional world of the Internet you will always see a slower adoption of technology and an even slower understanding of what that technology can do.

At present the Internet is still fumbling through puberty, lots of rash behaviours, gauche attempts at refinement and just plain old misunderstandings. No shame in any of that either as these stages are all needed to progress. We are on the cusp of a more sanguine Internet, an Internet where the technology is being used for more far reaching tasks. Our demands are increasing as the expectation levels rise with seemingly no ceiling in sight. Social Media , too will refine and be a more considered tool than the reactionary sensationalist entity it is today. Again, no shame here either as this also is a needed step on the path to progress. Where we go from here depends on who is putting forward the ideas for growth and how those ideas are received. Social Media has shown a definite shift towards more human interaction based activities rather than the initial extension of crass advertising techniques we all waded through in the recent past.

We know that if your digital infrastructure is good, you will be able to talk to many people: we are also starting to understand that if your content is good, you will have many people wanting to talk to you! There lies the subtle difference many corporations and business owners are grappling with, now the technology is in place are we focused on the message delivery method more than the message?

watch this video from Eddie Obeng as he talks about ‘failure’ and the need to shift focus in the development of new business ideas:

If you are not inspired by that talk then you need to find a different job! A fantastic, simple identification of the issue in-front of us all as we look for the next advance to send our work into the stratosphere.

I leave you with this one thought in the ‘user number’ biased world of the Internet; no matter how sophisticated and targeted your ecosystem is, you still have to function within the overall structure of the Internet. Having 800 million active users tells me two things of equal importance, firstly; you have a very large user base waiting for you to inspire them and secondly, perhaps more telling; there are still about 6.2 billion people who you don’t know how to talk to yet!

see you on the long and winding road……. Patrick

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