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Francis Gosselin

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Francis Gosselin

Francis Gosselin (BBA 2005, MSc 2008)

President, FG8; Director, SAGE Consulting

Celebrating Failure as a Path to Innovation

President of FG8, director of SAGE Consulting, member of the board of MUTEK, 2014 winner of an HEC Montréal Relève d’Excellence award, writer, blogger, speaker, ambassador for C2 Montréal, PhD in economics from the University of Strasbourg, master’s in international business from HEC Montréal… with so many accolades under his belt, you wouldn’t think Francis Gosselin knew much about failure.

And yet the HEC Montréal alum is an enthusiastic proponent of the subject! He spoke about it at length at the 2016 annual alumni reunion. The way he puts it, if everything always goes as planned, life would be much less enjoyable, vibrant and creative. Failure leads the way to learning, at both the individual and the organizational level, to taking risks and to ushering in innovation.

Failure is a must in the scientific process and a springboard for ongoing growth and development in the business world. It is also important to our democratic institutions: for every political candidate who wins, several others must go home empty-handed. Otherwise, the entire concept of democracy would collapse, only to be replaced by an older system of control by power and authority – a system marked by neglect of human rights and population displacement.

“For every new creative idea and every innovation that emerges, another must fall by the wayside,” he pointed out during his presentation. “That means our romantic ideal of keeping everything the way it is in perpetuity actually runs counter to our desire to make better art, produce better knowledge and manufacture better products. Old companies must die out to make way for new ones – otherwise they end up being monopolies. They become exploitative, complacent, lazy and inefficient. Ultimately, they create the conditions for their own demise.”

That is why Francis’s head is always teeming with new ideas and new projects. He’s not scared of failure. In fact, he embraces it, knowing that it will fuel the fires of innovation. It is this drive that impelled him to found the FG8 management consultancy in October 2015. The firm is currently made up of a team of 10 passionate, forward-thinking professionals.

In addition to advising on methods and strategies, FG8 delivers a full range of services, including project management, complex economic research, interactive workshops, and training and seminars featuring tools and solutions that facilitate change, both here and abroad. Clearly this is not the last we’ve heard from this dynamic young entrepreneur, who is poised to make big things happen in the years to come.

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