Rob Forbes: How I survived my worst failure


In this presentation, entrepreneur Rob Forbes recounts his biggest failure: the underwhelming launch of PUBLIC Bikes. “It had me in the fetal position,” he says. “I’ve never been so wrong in my life.” Forbes recounts how the humbling experience made him return to basics and value creativity over being clever, giving him a new mantra: “Failure is an option.” 

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About Rob

Rob grew up in Pasadena and Laguna Beach, California. He studied aesthetics at UC Santa Cruz and received an MFA in ceramics from Alfred University. Rob has been an artist, author, professor, photographer, publisher, and business entrepreneur. He has held executive positions at some retail companies, such as Selfridges, William Sonoma, and The Nature Company. He is best known as the Founder of Design Within Reach (DWR, 1998) which marketed European modern furnishings to American buyers; and PUBLIC Bikes (2009) an on-line bike retailer. 
Forbes has received numerous public recognition and awards for his advocacy of design and urbanism, he also serves on numerous boards in the non-profit sector. He recently authored "See for Yourself", published by Chronicle Books,  which asks readers to look more carefully and curiously at everyday design in our man-made world.
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