Everyone understands that we learn from our mistakes and that they are an important part of our growth.
How many companies, on the other hand, have you worked for where mistakes were tolerated?
People are frequently punished for their mistakes, which means that the only lesson we learn is that mistakes are harmful and should be avoided at all costs.
When people talk about learning from mistakes, I don’t believe that this is what we had in mind.
Mistakes can be costly and we should look to try and keep them to a minimum, we shouldn’t encourage mistakes just for the sake of learning.
However, we should be more tolerant of mistakes, and we should work with our teams to minimize the impact of mistakes and maximize learning.
If we look to punish mistakes we will create a culture where risks are avoided, as risk-taking often increases the probability of mistakes and failure.
But if we eliminate risks then we really will be settling for mediocrity, as small risks lead to small gains.
There is a saying; “you have to go out on a limb sometimes, as that is where the fruit is”.
In order for our organizations to reach their full potential, we need to take risks, sometimes big risks and this means that we will increase our probability of mistakes and failure, but we should embrace this and see it as progress.
As leaders, we set the culture, we need to be the ones who encourage risk-taking in a safe environment, encouraging sensible risk-taking.
If we focus on punishing mistakes, then we are stopping progress!
If you want to learn more about creating highly engaged teams or being a better leader click the link to make an appointment to talk about how I can help.