Following the Rocky Yet Rewarding Path of Success


How Failure Leads to Success

Compiled by Lisa D. Smith & Nancy J. Reid, proud ambassadors of the 8 Keys of Excellence character education program.

“If it weren’t for the rocks in its bed, the stream would have no song.’ Carl Perkins

Whether an artist or a poet, an inventor, business magnate or a political activist, it’s important to view failures as feedback to gain the information needed to learn, grow, and succeed. Rather than viewing failure in a negative way, successful leaders in all walks of life tend to view failure as a valuable learning experience. They know that having a fear of failure can hold them back from trying something new and ingenious, something that could be successful.

The only real failure in life is not learning from our mistakes. The key to success is to look carefully at what went wrong, change what we did the first time, and try again by applying what we learned.

Listen to the Big Blend Radio 8 Keys of Excellence panel discussion focusing on “Failure Leads to Success” with Bobbi DePorter – Co-Founder of SuperCamp & President of Quantum Learning Network, Steve Piacente – life coach and best-selling author of ‘Bella’ and ‘Bootlicker’, and Rob Ridgeway – creator of the award-winning and best-selling board game Spontuneous. This episode also features a Hollywood History segment as recalled by Steve Schneickert.


Failure Leads To Success Panel

Take a Virtual Walk in the Excellence Hall of Fame

“Failure Leads to Success” is the second key in the 8 Keys of Excellence. Created by Bobbi DePorter, the 8 Keys of Excellence is a character education program that guides young people toward a positive future full of confidence, motivation, creativity, team work, leadership and valuable life principles. On our way to changing the lives of 50 million children, The Excellence Effect is a movement to build excellence in the lives of young people worldwide through the 8 Keys of Excellence family and school character programs. See


As part of The Excellence Effect, we’re taking a virtual walk down the Excellence Hall of Fame to reflect upon some of the wise words written and spoken by eight historic leaders whose actions and words exemplify the “Failure Leads to Success” Key of Excellence. From an aviation pioneer and an inventor to presidential and political leaders, a business magnate to educators and authors, these inspiring and successful leaders have parks, museums and historic sites that we can visit to learn about and celebrate their life, work and heritage.

Booker T. WashingtonBOOKER T. WASHINGTON
Educator, Author, Orator, Presidential Advisor & African-American Community Leader

“Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome.”

Learn More & Visit: Booker T. Washington National Monument in Hardy, Virginia; and the Tuskegee Institute National Historic Site in Tuskegee, Alabama.

Author, Political Activist & Lecturer

“Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved.”

Learn More & Visit: Ivy Green, Helen Keller’s Birthplace in Tuscumbia, Alabama.

16th U. S. President, Statesman & Lawyer

“The probability that we may fail in the struggle ought not to deter us from the support of a cause we believe to be just.”

Learn More & Visit:
Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park in Hodgenville, Kentucky; Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial in Lincoln City, Indiana; Lincoln Home

National Historic Site in Springfield, Illinois; and the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC.

– Birthplace –

– Boyhood Home –

– Lincoln Home NHS

– Lincoln Memorial –

Former First Lady of the U.S., Politician, Diplomat & Activist

“You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’”

Learn More & Visit:
Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site in Hyde Park, New York.
Thomas Edison
Inventor & Business Man

“Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.”

Learn More & Visit: Thomas Edison National Historical Park in West Orange, New Jersey.

Poet & Novelist

“I’m not afraid of storms, for I’m learning how to sail my ship.”

Learn More & Visit: The Wayside Home of Authors in Concord Massachusetts.

Captain of Industry, Business Magnate & Founder of the Ford Motor Company

“When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it.”

Learn More & Visit: MotorCities National Heritage Area in Detroit, Michigan.



Aviation Pioneer & Author

“Women, like men, should try to do the impossible. And when they fail, their failure should be a challenge to others.”

Learn More & Visit: Amelia Earhart Birthplace Museum in Atchison, Kansas.                



Featured Success Quotes shared by Big Blend Radio Panelists include:

“Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.” Winston Churchill

“You’ll always miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” Wayne Gretzky

“There are two kinds of courage, physical and moral, and he would be a true leader must have both. Both are the products of the character-forming process, of the development of self-control, self-discipline, physical endurance, of knowledge of one’s job and, therefore, of confidence. These qualities minimize fear and maximize sound judgement under pressure and – with some of that indispensable stuff called luck – often bring success from seemingly hopeless situations.”  General Mathew B. Ridgway

“It’s not how far you fall, but how high you bounce that counts.” Zig Ziglar

“Every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it the seed of an equal or greater benefit.” Napoleon Hill






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