I think making mistakes inexpensive is the most important factor to encourage innovation. I personally learn a lot from making mistakes. But I have also seen others think better or think different when the don’t have to worry about the consequences of their experiment.
That is why a lot of companies, once they grow beyond a reputation, stop innovating – they cannot afford to make mistakes. And that is how a lot of individuals innovate – by taking the risk of making mistakes. Avoiding mistakes is possible only if you operate in the current solution spaces. If you are looking at new pastures, mistakes will happen. I think companies ought to be looking for guidelines to make mistakes cheaper along with guidelines for avoiding them.