He goes on to say, "The idea that we learn from our failures is built on the notion that we learn from our own experience, that experience is the best teacher. In one sense that is obviously true, because experience is really all we have. But to learn from experience means that we have to process it in some way that makes it available to us. We have to analyze it. And, most of us, for some reason or another, don't do that. We don't take the time and energy, we don't want to know the unpleasant aspects of it, we don't want to look deeply into our failures. Experience could be the best teacher, but it seldom is. As an example, organization consultant Robert Tannenbaum says that too many senior managers who have been at the job thirty years don't necessarily have thirty years experience - they have more like one year of experience, thirty times."
As we consider issues in our organizational diagnoses, it is important to look for both individual willingness and organizational willingness to REFLECT on failures as well as success. I might mention that Farson also says that "we learn not from our failures but from our successes and the failure of others." True reflection - "nothing is as invisible as the obvious."