Kirk, here’s my own failure, and not just in the work you and I have done on this practice together, either. I’ve analyzed my failures to teach proper failure analysis, and this is one of the biggest, most painful lessons. I have often simply failed to even share, let alone drive home, the actual reason FOR failure analysis, at all. Here it is:
* We analyze for one and ONLY one reason – we EXPECT TO WIN, now! *
We do not analyze in hopes of future victory. We do not analyze in order to understand the failure. We analyze exclusively due to the fact that there are battles going on that we will do whatever it takes to win, now.
Have you heard of the Japanese Tea Ceremony called Cha No Yu? My understanding is that its creator, a Samurai named Sen No Rikyu, created it with the following vision. He pictured a general on the battlefield, growing ever wearier from attempting to monitor every element of the give and take over the entire field of combat. He pictured a moment when the general simply must step away, be refreshed, gain perspective and renewed clarity so he could return…and win.
A little clarity, a little peace of mind, a new vision, and wham, right back to it!
This is the actual purpose of failure analysis. You must extract the evil energy from the failure so it does not linger and haunt your next steps! But, you must convert the analysis into action for victory and, Kirk!, a victory you intend to win… and CELEBRATE!