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How Successful People Think: Fail Forward

“Cement your learning through action.”

How Successful People Think by John C. Maxwell, page 78

Talk is cheap, and lip service is exactly that. The majority of people talk a good game. The proof is in the pudding.

I’ll throw in one more phrase that might hit a tender nerve, and that is: “The road to hell is paved with good intentions.”

Click on the book to grab your own copy of "How Successful People Think"

Click on the book to grab your own copy of “How Successful People Think”

I’m reminded of a famous quote from Tom Peters in his first book, In Search of Excellence, when he shared with his readers: “It’s amazing to me how many people in the oil business fail to get the message that in order to strike oil, you have to dig a hole.”

I’ve been sharing this reminder for over 20 years. Thanks to today’s “cover your ass” business approach, people are putting off making decisions as long as possible. They think about it, plan about it, read about it, study about it, meet about it, and do just about everything to postpone making a decision.

It amazes me how many people in sales fail to get the message that the easiest and fastest way for improvement in any area of your business is to make a mistake. In other words, failure is a good thing. (I am not suggesting you fail stupid. I am suggesting you step out of your comfort zone.)

Many people have figured out the best way to avoid failure is to not do anything at all. According to me, this is counter-productive, counter-intuitive, and counter everything. Accelerated failure is my way of reminding you to put your plan into action as quickly as possible. Only then can you study it and make the appropriate course corrections. The sooner you fail, the sooner you succeed. You heard it here.

I can hear many of you now thinking that Marchev has lost his marbles. I assure you that I have not. This is my message and I’m sticking to it.


Mike presents a business-building webinar on the third Thursday of every month sponsored by AmaWaterways. To receive monthly invitations send Mike an email with the words “business training” in the Subject Box. You will also receive a link to the recorded version.

For information on Mike’s Fourth Annual Training Cruise, email Mike at mike@mikemarchev.com with the word “cruise” in the subject box.

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