Is it OK to experiment and fail?

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Hey, Tech Innovator – I am the new CIO of a large software product development in Virginia.  I am very passionate about trying new things – even if that means failing.  I’d like to see us adopt Lean and Agile techniques for some of our mobile development, to start, but our CEO is reluctant to experiment for fear of failure.  I’ve been telling him that failure is a good thing, as long as you learn from it.  What is your opinion? ~ Dan L.


This Tech Innovator agrees with you.  At my company, motifworks, we pride ourselves on being fast and Agile.  We love to start small and try different things and have experiments.  In my humble opinion, it is smart to build experimentation into your process.  And it is good to fail.

Like you, motifworks thrives on the challenge of building new software products, working on new problems, learning emerging technology and discovering new ideas outside our current domain.  We take this approach to everything from business intelligence to user experience, Web 2.0 and web and mobile solutions.

Though it’s fun way to learn, this approach has certainly caused me to experience my share of failure.  But that failure has never been permanent.  And I have never perceived it as a negative.  In fact, a lot of good has come out of it.

For example, some months ago, the local business newspaper heard the story about how I converted early failure to business success.  Check out the article they published about us in the Baltimore Business Journal.

Motifworks has grown significantly since the article came out, but we still maintain the philosophy that failure is an essential part of the process of being innovative, learning and growing.  Thanks to our willingness to fail and learn, we’ve been able to create products that our clients love, products that are usable, engaging, cool and simple, products we never would have been able to create if we had simply played it safe.

Thanks for your question, Dan.  Stop by anytime!

Motifworks ( is a partner in emerging technology and innovation for business problem-solvers.  Companies as large as Microsoft and Sears and as small as one-person start-ups rely on motifworks for lower cost, better delivery and more innovative thinking.  For a partner in emerging technology and innovation, contact motifworks at

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