Summary of Why Refusing to Discuss Failure Erodes a Culture of Growth

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Why Refusing to Discuss Failure Erodes a Culture of Growth summary

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Talking about failure is unpleasant – especially in front of work colleagues, employees and superiors. But successful companies do just that, argues Alex Birkett, a manager at HubSpot. In a blog post, he offers an overview of best practices for companies on how to avoid success bias. In an age where the ability to innovate is crucial for companies to remain viable, leaders will welcome Birkett’s applicable recommendations on fostering a company culture that celebrates failure as an opportunity to grow.

About the Author

Alex Birkett is a senior growth marketing manager at HubSpot.


Companies often fail to see failure as part of their success stories.

Many companies perform “success theater” by only discussing wins and not failures. Yet, neglecting to engage with the lessons of failed efforts robs teams of the opportunity to learn from them. It also prevents them from considering their achievements objectively and thus creates false expectations for the future.

Some warning signs may indicate a mind-set that neglects the value of failure: including the dismissal of real obstacles by describing them as “opportunities”; a habit of making rosy predictions; a celebration of short-term successes even...

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