Fail fast & early part 1: The failosophy
- Geplaatst op woensdag 14 april 2021
It is easy to just give up when things don't work out, or not to take risks at all. But failure doesn’t mean the initial idea wasn’t valid or that you are not enough. Failure simply means there is a lesson to be learned. Something at Avanade we know to be very true.
Why is failing seen and experienced as a bad thing and why is it so hard to accept as a part of life? In the course of our evolution, didn't failure taught us valuable lessons; do not touch fire, keep your hands out of wall sockets, you can't defeat a bear with your bare hands, etc. Yes, those lessons came at a cost that often seems higher than you'd have liked. And it's that part we object to, the 'paying the bill', even though we know we will come out of this stronger afterwards.
Failing equals maximum reward
At Avanade, we noticed the power of learned lessons; our years of experience taught us how to be better, deliver with excellence, and overcome known roadblocks. Over the years we've created and perfected processes that extract the valuable lessons of failing. With minimum risk or investment and maximum reward.
Nowadays, the average adult makes approximately 35.000 conscious choices every day; that number has significantly gone up since primordial times. So you might expect we would be pretty good at it by now. However, with the number of options we have today in every aspect of our life, products, clothing, movies, and technology, making choices is more challenging now than ever before. As a result, businesses are very aware of the higher probability and consequence of making the wrong choice. Of course, there is a nuance here in the weight of the choices we make; choosing the wrong sandwich might ruin your lunch but has few consequences in the long run.
Standard versus customized
When large corporations need to decide on their next product, website, app, or software upgrade, the repercussions of making the wrong choice are substantially higher. Thus, it is very enticing to implement a standard software solution, thinking to minimize the risk of failing. But in the same decision they also unknowingly reduce the chance of a perfect fit solution. While there are situations where existing and verified solutions offer the best options, for instance with Office 365 implementations, there are also situations where tailored interfaces provide much more advantages. For example in client or employee portals, chatbots, apps and websites.
The road of standardization is often traveled too soon, and many great opportunities to maximize efficiency are lost. While the standard choice might seem a logical choice at first glance, a less obvious consequence is that by going down this path, we remove the user-centric part of software implementation, not focusing on what makes a company unique and a process less or more efficient. User centricity is oriented explicitly on making users more effective, increasing online sales or optimizing specific workflow goals. It comes as little surprise that according to recent research user-centric strategies correlate strongly with higher financial results due to the focus and purpose it adds to a business and its target groups (internal and external).
Deviating from standards comes with risk. It always does, but it can also come with great rewards. The trick now is to minimize the risk part, the part where we might fail, and maximize the output results - which is the product. But how do we do that? In the next blog, I'll explain how we managed to turn failing into a powerful tool during a delivery process, and one of our strongest assets all around.