Making mistakes is good for business. Yet some business leaders think mistakes are a bad thing.
Stick with me and I will explain why making mistakes is good for business … I’ll also show you how to deal with mistakes.
Success is a lousy teacher. It seduces smart people into thinking they can’t lose. – Bill Gates
Making Mistakes at Work
Let’s face it. No one achieves anything without making many mistakes along the way. Whether you’re learning to do something for the first time or a successful business leader you’ve made mistakes.
Indeed such shortcomings are what define us.
Making mistakes makes us uniquely human. It’s how we learn.
So why does making mistakes at work have such a stigma?
I believe there are two reasons:
- the fear of failure and being judged by others, and
- the fear of exposure and being seen as weak or incompetent.
However, such logic is flawed.
The mistake is in our thinking!
Learning to Deal With Mistakes
Business leaders should put aside their fear and ego and become trailblazers who tell the truth about making mistakes.
Such transparency will attract people to your cause and hold you up as an authentic advocate of change.
What’s more, an honest culture allows people to take risks and be creative without fear of consequences. And when things don’t go to plan and fall short of business goals problems are uncovered and put to rights sooner.
A man who makes no mistakes does not usually make anything. – Edward John Phelps quoting William Magee
Businesses that embrace error recognise the value in mistakes. They learn to make workable solutions and do something different.
A mistake isn’t failure; it is a step closer to success!
Making mistakes is good for business.
1. Support Only Good Mistakes
Good mistakes are strong actions, bad results. Bad mistakes are sloppy or lazy efforts, bad results.
2. Allow Only Original Mistakes
Don’t tolerate the same mistake happening a second or third time. Learning from mistakes, not repeating them, is the path to rapid innovation.
3. Encourage Only Rescued Mistakes
If all mistakes turn into costly failures, they will soon bankrupt pocketbook and patronage. The key is to rescue mistakes before they become catastrophes.
How does your business handle mistakes?
Creative Commons image courtesy Marc Louwes.