1 min read

Failure isn't bad, it's essential

“One of my jobs is to encourage people to be bold. It’s incredibly hard. Experiments are, by their very nature, prone to failure. A few big successes compensate for dozens and dozens of things that didn’t work. Bold bets — Amazon Web Services, Kindle, Amazon Prime— all of those things are examples of bold bets that did work, and they pay for a lot of experiments. I’ve made billions of dollars of failures at Amazon.com. Literally billions of dollars of failures. You might remember Pets.com or Kosmo.com. None of those things are fun. But they also don’t matter.

What really matters is, companies that don’t continue to experiment, companies that don’t embrace failure, they eventually get in a desperate position where the only thing they can do is a Hail Mary bet at the very end of their corporate existence. Whereas companies that are making bets all along, even big bets, prevail. I don’t believe in bet-the-company bets. That’s when you’re desperate. That’s the last thing you want to do.”

Jeff Bezos