Embrace Your Mistakes

growth and development growth mindset learn from mistakes personal accountability Mar 05, 2024
Jody Holland Training & Speaking | Leadership
Embrace Your Mistakes

I used to think that being successful meant never making any mistakes, but I have since learned that some of the most successful people in life have made the most mistakes. The key to their success is that they learned from those mistakes. They did not become discouraged, they did not shut down, and they did not think of themselves as failures. Like Thomas Edison famously said, “I have not failed. I’ve just learned 10,000 ways that won’t work.” Many people are on the edge of something great, but they’ll never get there if they give up too soon.

Businesses thrive when they accept and embrace their mistakes because it allows them to move on proactively. Mistakes allow us to gain new perspectives on things and adapt as necessary. When employees are individually empowered to make mistakes instead of being punished for them, they start taking calculated risks that can lead to greater opportunities for the organization. We will never grow if we are too afraid to take action.

If an employee does make a mistake that needs to be corrected, it’s important to approach them in a constructive manner. For example, you might follow the structure of saying, “When you did ____(a behavior), I felt ____(a feeling) because ____(the impact).” This prevents the conversation from becoming a personal attack on someone else and instead addresses the behavior that lead to a specific outcome. By correcting the behavior, the results change naturally. This also opens up a conversation for how the individual can approach something similar in the future, which requires problem solving, personal accountability, and intentionality.

Once you are able to see mistakes as learning opportunities, you will never have to fear making them. Most people are not thinking about your mistakes as much as you may think they are, and once you take new action, they have likely moved on completely. We are harder on ourselves than anyone else can be, so embrace your mistakes and learn from them. Master this skill, and you will go far in both life and in business.


-Meghan Slaughter

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