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How Effective Leaders Handle Mistakes

How to bounce back from your mistakes

In Summary

•When you permit yourself to make mistakes, you open your mind to learning because much of life is learning from mistake

•After you have accepted your mistakes, learned, and applied the lessons from them, the next logical step is to move on

 

As a leader, you will make mistakes. Settle it. It is not a matter of if, but when. Mistakes are not planned. They happen because we miss something; we do not accurately assess a situation because of our blind spots.

Our mistakes do not have to be fatal; we can bounce back from them. That is what effective leaders do well. They do not let mistakes paralyse them. These leaders have systems to ensure their quick recovery from missteps. Here are four simple ways by which effective leaders handle mistakes – these tips would help you.

Give Yourself Permission: This is the greatest challenge in mistakes management. Due to culture, religion, family background, social pressure, etc., some people do not allow or make room for mistakes. In many societies, people are more interested in saving face. You are not perfect; you are bound to make mistakes – accept it. Give yourself permission to mess up occasionally and understand that it is okay. That is life.

When you permit yourself to make mistakes, you open your mind to learning because much of life is learning from mistakes. This permission helps you see the opportunities that are buried in mistakes. Sometimes, we are not ushered to the next level until we have gone through a mistake. So, you must understand that mistakes are part of success dynamics.

Learn from Your Mistakes:  Every mistake reveals something that needs changing or improvement; mistakes are learning opportunities. So, what are your mistakes teaching you about yourself? What needs to change for you to go to the next level? Are you open to the insights that your mistakes present? Effective leaders glean the lessons from mistakes.

Apply Lessons from Mistakes: Let me tell you a secret – mistakes are a source of power; yes, your mistakes can empower you. How? You are empowered by your mistakes when you apply the lessons from them. You are empowered only to the degree to which you apply the lessons. If lessons are not applied, then the opportunity for empowerment is lost. Effective leaders do not lose this chance – they apply the lessons from mistakes.

Move On: This is a vital step and effective leaders do it well. After you have accepted your mistakes, learned, and applied the lessons from them, the next logical step is to move on. This means progress. Otherwise, the mistakes could rule your life – there is no need for this. You have grown through your mistakes, you are wiser, now move on.

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