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‘Failures are the most effective path to success’ – 40 uplifting quotes of 2022 on failure, learning and resilience

Launched in 2014, StoryBites is a regular feature from YourStory, featuring notable quotable quotes in our past articles. Share these gems and insights with your colleagues and networks, and check back to the original articles for more insights.

Mistakes and errors are part of the startup journey, and show the path to success ahead. A mindset of reflection, resilience and resolve is key to bounce back from challenges. Learning from the mistakes of others and asking for help when down and out are also useful practices.

Drawn from our comprehensive coverage of the startup ecosystem this year, we present 40 quotes on how to accept and cope with the inevitable challenges in the entrepreneur’s roller-coaster journey. See our earlier quotes compilations on failure lessons from 2021 and 2020.

We have divided this quotes compilation into six sections: Mindset, Failure lessons, The startup journey, Organisational culture, Artistic insights, and The road ahead.

See also our reviews of the related books The Rebuilders, Fail-Safe Startup, The Other ‘F’ Word, The Messy Middle, Who Blunders and How, Adapt, The Up Side of Down, and The Wisdom of Failure. 

YourStory wishes all founders, innovators and changemakers a Happy New Year ahead, and all the best for success and reinvention in 2023!


In this journey, we will see failures more than success, and the only thing that will keep you going is your dream. – Aashutosh Yadav, A to Z Bath Solutions

What matters is how someone bounces back from failure, and keeps running with their confidence intact. – Hema Prem Rainaa, Infosys

As soon as we accept the fear of failure, we will be open to making more mistakes, and eventually leading to more learning and leading a fulfilling life. – Masoom Minawala

Mistakes help us see things differently. However, we have to see mistakes differently first. – Prashant Desai, ‘The Biography of a Failed Venture’

Failure is the way to be innovative and successful. You can fail with pride. – Gopi Kallayil, Google

There is a greater risk of failure and new challenges every day, which can sometimes leave you jaded and make you feel quite lonely. – Supriya Paul, Josh Talks

Failure is one of the most powerful parts of the human experience, the fact that we all have the capacity to learn, to commit to doing it differently, to move on, and to let ourselves grow. – Lauren Celenza, DesignUp 2022


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Failure lessons

Failure offers opportunities to learn, which success does not! – Rajesh Srivastava, ‘The New Rules of Business’

If you fail, learn, and then succeed, that is what everybody loves. It is because you figured something out. – Jeff Maggioncalda, Coursera

Don’t worry about failures. As long as you learn from them, the next time will be better. It’s when you don’t learn from them that the problems start! – Dhruv Nath, ‘Dream Founder’

Failures often make for better learnings and stories than successes do. – Sara Tate and Anna Vogt, ‘The Rebuilders’

If you aren’t failing, you aren’t learning and growing. The only way to get better is to experience both success and failure. – Susan Foley, ‘Intrapreneurs’

The focal point has to be on learnings and how to deal with those failures better and minimising their impact. – Venkatesh Sundar, Indusface

Learning from failure helps experimentation with more confidence. – Manjunath Honnapura, Beyond Forms and Plain

Every failure will teach you something so take every hurdle as a learning lesson. Let the struggle motivate you and make your resolve even stronger. – Akanksha Arora, Tribe Amrapali


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The startup journey

Being an entrepreneur, one must make tough decisions, go through failures, have the grit to start all over again, listen to that bug, and go ahead. – Mabel Chacko, Open Technologies

Get great at failing. Being an entrepreneur, running a business or starting anything new will come with failures and setbacks. Seeing failure as a temporary disruptor, and as an opportunity to grow, is liberating. – Sonya Barlow, Like Minded Females Network

Entrepreneurship is an embodiment of courage, perseverance, risk-taking, leadership, passion, hardship and failure before attaining the elusive milestone of success. – Cynthia S Srinivas, HPE

If you don’t start up, you will not know how far you can go. Don’t be afraid to fail or make mistakes, because only then can you learn to do better. – Elvira Threeyama, Chezvies Patterns

If that idea gets you going, go ahead and do it; the worst that can happen is you fail, and it’s better to accept failure than to keep wondering “What if…” – Udita Pal, Salt

Just start it and do it with 100 percent of your heart and you’ll succeed one day. Do not let the fear of failure stop you. – Akshata Jain, Knot Your Type


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Organisational culture

Every company, every individual will have lots of many, many small failures. The trick is just do it faster, reduce the cost, and get your learnings out. – Ashish Kashyap, INDmoney

Celebrate failures. If people fear failures and their repercussions, then they will never take risk. And if they never take risk, then innovation will never happen. – Ujwal Kalra, ‘Startup Compass’

Learn from failures, and make them visible. – Daniel Strode, ‘The Culture Advantage’

A fundamental dilemma is when to accept failure. – Vikram Singh Mehta, Neelima Khetan, and Jayapadma RV, ‘Anchoring Change’

Create a sense of psychological safety for your teams and increase the organisation’s tolerance for failure. – Ashish Goel, ‘Drawing on Courage’

You want to separate out failure due to being bold and taking something that’s inherently risky versus failure due to just poor execution. – Srinivas Narayanan, ex-Facebook

The organisational culture needs to not merely tolerate but encourage proactiveness, innovativeness and (calculated) risk-taking – and help managers feel safe to try and fail. – Shameen Prashantham, ‘Gorillas Can Dance’

Business is a rollercoaster ride, but one doesn’t have to get elated with successes, nor too low with failures or tough times. And tough times will come. – Falguni Nayar, Nykaa

An attempt to directly build a complex system is almost inevitably doomed to failure. – Ashwin Srinivasan, Atlassian

Innovation breeds on failure. It’s imperative that the fail points are discovered early on. – Harish Mehta, ‘The Maverick Effect’

[Leaders always say] failure is mine, success is yours. – Aparna Kumar, HSBC India


‘Design is at the deepest level of problem-solving’ – Top 60 quotes of 2022 on the importance and impact of design

Artistic insights

Failures are an integral part of art! How can one learn without failures? – Akshata Shetty, India Art Festival

Failure is parallel to creation in an artist’s life. In reality, an artist never fails. – Sujata Sejekan, ‘Femme’ exhibition

Just as the artist’s clothes are splattered with paint, the life of the bold mind is inevitably littered with failure. – Scott Cochrane, ‘Your Creative Mind’

Failure to me is like eating at a buffet but then finding out that they’ve run out of dessert. – Krish Ashok, ‘The Masala Lab’


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The road ahead

In this journey, we will see failures more than success, and the only thing that will keep you going is your dream. – Aashutosh Yadav, A to Z Bath Solutions

Ask for help wherever you require as once you do that the fear of failure will subside. – Sukhleen Aneja, Good Glamm Group

Failure is an option here. If things are not failing, you are not innovating enough. – Elon Musk

Failures are the most effective path to success. So, seek the strength within you to chase your dreams. – Deepti Prasad,

We all fail. We all make mistakes. The key is to not be oblivious to the mistake. – Kumar Mangalam Birla

You can choose two kinds of regrets—regret that you failed or regret that you are not doing anything at all and the ‘what if’ aspect of it. Choose wisely. – Tarusha Mittal, Oropocket

Those who try, do not fail. – Rukmani Devi Katara, Durga Energy

YourStory has also published the pocketbook ‘Proverbs and Quotes for Entrepreneurs: A World of Inspiration for Startups’ as a creative and motivational guide for innovators (downloadable as apps here: Apple, Android).

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