Religion believes in right and wrong. But there is no place for it in business. Nor for its love child – success and failure. The binary mindset - Yes/No with no options of "Maybe" or "a good first step" or "It's good but it can be better still"- has been the death of many companies.
There is another mindset to get rid of too. The Project one.
BPM is about continuous improvement – P stands for Process, not for Project, and processes, in theory, go on forever.
There are some Fool’s Mate failures – you know – really stupid errors which guarantee it is a waste of everyone’s time.
The first is when someone talks about “implementing BPM”, like screwing in a lightbulb. Fit and forget, without mindset change.
The second is when they appoint a Project Head. They are going to try to fit it in a box marked Project.
The third is when the CEO says “Collaborate with XXX on this, will you?" If you have to be forced to work together on a top-down directive, it won't work. If someone gets so excited that they say “work with me on this and we’ll take it to the CEO”, it has a chance of being effective.
But the real meat in this question is the definition of failure. To me it is…
When the process doesn’t get markedly better every month after the BPM team has gone home.
When the process doesn’t adapt to a change in the needs of the customer.
When the people operating it aren’t constantly thinking of ways to make it better still (and have the ability to implement them).
Most BPM experts are long gone before those three failures happen, busily writing it up as a success story for their website.