“Failing Forward” – my speech to UC Berkeley’s incoming students

When I got the request to speak to all the incoming students at UC Berkeley on Failing Forward last month, I got up close and personal with my fears… and my own message.  Would I be able to pull it off? Does what I have to say matter to 10,000+ incoming students??

My concern was not unfounded.  This is a big, and NEW, important topic for Cal.  A university that prides itself on its excellence now asks students to fail??  Pretty noteworthy – so much so the news even picked up on what a few professors and I had to say about it: http://www.mercurynews.com/2017/08/18/uc-berkeley-wants-students-to-know-its-ok-to-fail/

To manage the enormity of this task with the time I was given, my fallback was to get up there unprepared and flat-out fail. Why not prove to myself and everyone else that the world would keep going and I would be just fine!

Fortunately, I didn’t have to do that. 🙂

So instead, here it is. If you find yourself retreating from opportunities for fear of failure, I welcome you to consider my message to this year’s incoming class.

What does failing forward mean to you? How might your life and work be different if you mastered this as a practice? Feel free to reach out separately via email or leave me a comment below!


Two steps forward, one step back


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