Many seem surprised with the problematic launch of the Obamacare website and not only those with a political ax to grind. I’ve even heard Obamacare friendlies ask, How could government get this so wrong after hiring experts, spending so much money and having so much time to prepare?
I’m not surprised. It fits well with how I think the world works. Most things fail. Some things work. We don’t know beforehand which will fail and which will work.
I’m not surprised the Obamacare launch failed. Most new things do.
It doesn’t matter that it was government or not, since we live in a trial-and-error universe. Government and free markets are subject to failing more often than succeeding.
Few people see this trial-and-error process. We see success stories and forget the failures. We forget Starbucks wasn’t always big and had its fits and starts and still does. Apple, too. Every company did. And for every success story, there are numerous failed attempts of competitors that we forget about.
The one thing that is a little more rare about the Obamacare trial is that it is on such a grand scale. Again, that’s not unique to government. Plenty of companies have had big roll-outs of products or business plans they were certain would work, only to fail. JC Penney, anyone?
The error, though, that some don’t seem to learn from is that we should avoid doing new things on such grand scales because most things fail.
Start small, test it and grow it through the crucible of trial-and-error.