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10 Reasons You're Probably Going to Fail
by Tom Goodman
March 19, 2009

On his blog, Tony Morgan mused about the common reasons why failure happens.  If you're headed for failure, he wrote, it's probably because of one of ten reasons:

  1. You're not doing what makes you passionate.  "If it doesn't make your heart beat fast or cause your mind to race when you're trying to sleep," he wrote, "you're probably doing the wrong thing."
  2. You're not working from a plan.  "You need a vision, and you need to identify specific steps to make that vision become reality.  That includes a financial plan."
  3. You're expecting everything to be perfect.  Morgan writes, "Test-drive it.  Beta-test that new idea.  You'll fall into the trap of inaction if you think it has to be absolutely right from day one."
  4. You don't want to work hard.  "Everything worth pursuing in my life has involved discipline and perseverance."
  5. You've stopped growing.  "Keep learning. Keep growing."  And, because projects worth your time are bigger than you are, "build a team of people including leaders that can be who you're not."
  6. You're resting on your laurels.  Ironically, success in the past can lead to failure in the future.  "I've watched organizations hang on to a good idea for too long.  Time passes.  Momentum fades."
  7. You're unwilling to stop doing something else.  "Complexity is easy.  Simplicity takes discipline."  Morgan compares it building a healthy marriage:  You can't if you're unwilling to give up dating other women.  In your organization, he asks, "who/what do you need to stop 'dating'?"
  8. You consider those around you in the organization to be co-workers but not friends.  "Anyone can hire from a resume.  You need to find people you want to share life with.  In the long run, great relationships will get you out of bed in the morning."
  9. You avoid the tough conversations.  Boy, do I need this reminder.  (I think it's a liability for pastors, who are always supposed to be "nice.")  Morgan writes, "When breakdown happens (and it always does), someone needs to put on their big-boy pants and initiate the difficult conversation that leads to relational healing."

    And the tenth reason you will probably fail:
  10. You're afraid of failure.  Ironic, huh?  "When fear consumes you, it will cause you to do stupid things.  You'll let negativity distract you.  You'll embrace the known, and grow comfortable with mediocrity.  The more often you fail, though, the more often you'll find success."

Of course, Morgan wrote his "10 Reasons" to be provocative.  In other words, we shouldn't resign ourselves to the prophecy that "you're probably going to fail."  Instead, you and I should look over this list, identify any tendencies that sound like ours, and then ask for God's help to change them.  In doing so, we reduce the likelihood that the title of his blog post becomes a prophecy.


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