Most people would say that learning from failure is a good thing. And I agree. It's important to learn from failure, so that we can grow when we mess up and do better next time.
I recently read this fascinating article by John Gerzema (an American writer and corporate consultant) regarding the possible negatives of embracing failure. Did we even think these negatives existed?!
He brings up an idea and thought that possibly by us all continuously reinforcing the idea with one another that failure is a good thing, we resign to the fact that we will fail, but also we start to isolate ourselves, work alone on projects without consulting others to protect the project from failing in the first place, as if the success or failure of the project relies entirely on us.
The article highlights an idea that through collaborative work, we may avoid failures in the first place – so rather than learning from our own failures, we can learn through others experience (whether successes or failures).
He asks the question “would there be less failing to begin with if we admitted what we don't know in the first place?”.
So maybe, rather than emphasising that it's ok to fail (which I still strongly to believe is true), we focus our advice in encouraging vulnerability and humility to ask for help? Simple, but could be very effective.