How many of you have failed recently? Did you fail in your work or in school? If you did, would you admit it? I want to talk about failure because a recent ASQ survey about teenagers and science careers revealed some interesting news.
Nearly all teens agree that risk-taking is required in science, technology, and engineering and math careers (STEM)—but almost half say they are afraid of taking those risks. Maybe that’s because most of the parents who were surveyed are also uncomfortable with their children failing. You can read the entire survey here.
We know that failing and trying again is key to problem-solving in STEM careers, and certainly in quality. And we know that fewer teens are pursuing STEM fields.
Now, this survey focuses on U.S. teens, so I wonder if students outside the U.S. are taught to be more comfortable with risk-taking, subsequent failure, and, of course, subsequent learning and growth.
And, I want to know how you—the quality professional–handle failure in the workplace. Do you try again until you find a solution? Are you penalized for failure? Or do you avoid it altogether? How much risk are you willing to take to find solutions to quality challenges?