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Best New Thinking Winner 2010

Koan No. 8

Koan No 8 Sorry – my mistake!

“An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes which can be made in a very narrow field.” Niels Bohr Physicist. Father of quantum theory. Expert.


I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. The question is not whether you make mistakes, you will. The question is whether you make good mistakes that you won’t repeat. There’s a nice comment in Scoring Points the book about the Tesco Club Card: “there is no such thing as complete success or complete failure. Everything that happens is an opportunity to learn and everything that goes wrong contains the germ of future success.” A perfect execution is a repetition of earlier learnings – it adds nothing new. In the light of which it is extraordinary how determined so many agencies are to claim they get it right “first time”. Which is dishonest. And stupid. And fortunately for the client wrong.

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