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Celebrating Failures!

As I have seen in my own work of collecting stories of failures and debris from scientists, it is much easier to deal with other people’s failures than your own. Part of it is that you are not as emotionally involved of course, but also, you have a different perspective. Through time and interviews, I find that when you ask people to talk about their failures and they agree to share (and a certain amount of trust must be present between the two parties or else you shouldn’t expect an answer), the stories will often have a happy ending, such as “and then I decided to do this”…). Now, I have compiled the list of my own failures – much harder but also fun to do, especially if there is a bit of time since that last failure. And do you know what? I feel I haven’t failed enough lately… not done enough and not taken enough risks. So, here’s my lastest risk-taking venture:

I have come across a man who claims he will hire people who fail. I am sending him my CV (see for yourself below) and let’s see what he says…

1. He hires me.  I win.

2. He doesn’t reply. I add this to my list of failures. I win

3. He replies he doesn’t want to hire me. I add this too… I won’t be so hopeful that we could start a discussion on the topic… but you never know. I win

In the meantime, this CV is a work in progress. I would love it if you had ideas on how to improve it…

Oh, and it seems I am not the only one suggesting one’s failures should be neatly compiled. Melanie Stefan says it too in Nature no less.

* Update: 3 weeks have passed and still no response from Jeff Stibel. Oh well, I’ll file that failure. Time to move on to the next one.

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