Monday, December 20, 2010

The "f word."

When I think of the "f word," many things comes to mind.  Some of the things that come to mind seem less than positive.  I try never to use it in anything that I say or do and I instill in my children that the "f word" is banned from our household.  When I refer to the "f word," I’m talking about failure.  I'm referring to the state or condition of not meeting a desirable or intended outcome.  It may be viewed as the opposite of success.

Not reaching intended goals or perceived outcomes are frustrating and can bear a tremendous toll on our self-confidence.  Successful endeavors require proper planning and execution.  Even with much attention to details, desired outcomes still may not be achieved.  There are variable factors that must be considered in every planning process.  Some variables can be controlled and predictable, yet other variables can be volatile and unpredictable.  Failure and success is pretty much up to interpretation.  What one person considers a failure may be considered a success by another.

With each successful person, comes a string of un-successes or failures.  Our country has benefited great successes through our failures.  Our advances in medical technology through clinical studies and technological advances through new innovations did not always have the desired outcomes from the beginning.  We learn from our failures.  When we fail, we make adjustments, and then we continue our efforts. 

When I look at the "f word," I don’t look at it in a negative connotation.  Failure is simply a process.  I look at the "f word" as simple steps leading to better outcomes.  Whether it is one, two or multiple steps, it defines us and pushes us to achieve excellence.

Failure is only the opportunity to begin again more intelligently. ~ Henry Ford

Below is a list of things that were considered failures on this day, December 20th.

2008: Continental Airlines Flight 1404, en route from Denver International Airport to Houston, veers off the runway upon takeoff and comes to a stop in a ravine, injuring 38 of the 112 passengers and crew aboard.

1996: New York Jets head coach Rich Kotite—famous for wearing a look of beleaguerment and anguish on the sidelines—announces he will be stepping down following the NFL team’s season finale three days later. The Jets go on to lose Kotite’s last game, a typical come-from-ahead collapse in which New York jumps out to a 14-0 lead over the Miami Dolphins, only to lose 31-28. In two seasons as coach of the Jets, Kotite compiles a 4-28 record, tying Leeman Bennett (Tampa Bay Buccaneers), for the worst record of any coach with more than 30 games with the same club.

1987: The Philippine ferry Dona Paz collides with a tanker, killing 4,386 people, making it the world’s worst peacetime tragedy at sea. The Dona Paz is licensed to carry only 1,500 people.

1980: NBC broadcasts an NFL game between the New York Jets and Miami Dolphins without announcers in the broadcast booth. The experiment is regarded as a failure, although the silent telecast draws a 13.5 rating, not far below the network’s 14.9 average for the 1980 regular season.

1803: France transfers ownership of the territory of Louisiana—which includes both the Mississippi and Missouri river valleys—to the United States. France receives only $15 million for 828,000 square miles of land.

Joseph Conrod Sr. SPHR 

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