The Energizer

Resilient Insights for Work & Life

The Success of Failure

by Eileen McDargh, Chief Energy Officer - Monday, August 17, 2015
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I am writing this post in advance because when it comes out, my husband and I will be on The Star Flyer, taking a bucket trip around the Balearic Islands off the coast of Spain.

It was not what we had intended to do.  But when the offer came up: “two for the price of one”, we jumped at it. After all, how many people can say they have been on a clipper ship and—weather permitting—can also hoist the sails?!

On a closer examination, that decision began to look like a failure in judgment. It wasn’t until the deposit was made that we noticed the per person port charges. I had not factored in that August is prime vacation month in Europe and airfares jump through the roof. Oh yes, I could have opted for changing planes three times or going to Barcelona by way of Moscow. But neither option seemed logistically smart even if financially prudent. Wine with meals appeared to be extra as well as any and all excursions though I am hoping they will at least take us to shore for our own walking tours.

Then how could I call this trip a “success”?

Simple: We’ll be having an adventure and an experience. No one will be harmed in the process. We won’t need to refinance the farm. And so what does it matter that I’ll work more days. We’ll call this trip our anniversary-birthday-Christmas present for the next five years. Every decision carries consequences—both positive and negative.

The point is this. As leaders, as managers, or as entrepreneurs, we can study all the angles until we can make the safest, most beneficial move. But in the meantime, prices could rocket, a ship could be put in dry dock, terrorists could get closer to this part of the Mediterranean, and one of us (or both) could suffer health challenges.

At some point in life, you hold your nose and jump. Waiting could be much worse.

PS: I’ll give you an update when we return!


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Eileen McDargh Keynote Speaker Blog Author

About Eileen!

Since beginning her consulting and training practice in 1980, Eileen has become noted for her ability to speak the truth with clarity, wisdom, humor and compassion. Long-standing clients and repeat engagements attest to her commitment to make a difference in minds, hearts and spirits of organizations and individuals. She draws upon practical business know-how, life's experiences and years of consulting to major national and international organizations that have ranged from global pharmaceuticals to the US Armed Forces, from health care associations to religious institutions. Executive Excellence magazine selected her as one of the top 100 thought leaders in leadership and among the top ten consultant providers of leadership development.

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