I recently came across a Twitter thread by @ThungTPhan that introduced me to the Museum of Failure, which is based in Stockholm. Established in 2017, the museum has over 150 products that demonstrate the critical importance of risk-taking and failure to innovation.
It’s hard to know which is the biggest/best failure, but I’m torn between three: (1) Heinz’s kid-friendly ketchup that came in a variety of colours, including ‘Funky Purple’ and ‘Awesome Orange’; (2) Winnebago’s Heli-Home, which is – yes, you’ve guessed it – a helicopter that turned into a mobile home; and (3) a spray-on condom!
The serious point is that if you’re not willing to take some prudent risks, you’ll never innovate effectively. As Jeff Bezos said after the failure of the Amazon Fire Phone, “If the size of your failures isn’t growing [in line with your business], you’re not going to be inventing at a size that can actually move the needle.”
So, what has been your company’s worst innovation, and what does that say about its commitment to innovation?
Off The Record: Bad Day by Daniel Powter
‘Cause you had a bad day
You’re taking one down
You sing a sad song just to turn it around
You say you don’t know
You tell me, “Don’t lie,”
You work at a smile and you go for a ride