Tag: Mistakes

Helping Your Team Deal With Mistakes

Helping Your Team Deal With Mistakes

“Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.” – Scott Adams

No matter how well your team prepares or what precautions they take, mistakes will happen. Mistakes are an essential part of life. Without them, it is not possible to fully grow and learn. When mistakes do occur, the key is for the team to bounce back, learn from them, and move forward. If your team learns from their mistakes, they are less likely to repeat them.

Take Responsibility For Mistakes

There are two ways to handle mistakes. You can deny the mistake or blame others, or you can accept it and take responsibility for your actions. Becoming defensive and making excuses for their mistakes will not help your team grow or improve. Accepting responsibility for mistakes is always the better option. It is the mature decision and a sign of integrity.

How to Accept Responsibility:

  • Make an appropriate apology: Apologize for mistakes. Do not, however, grovel or become overly emotional.
  • Explain the mistake and the process that led to it.

Related: Find out more about TBAE’s Goal Setting Outcome Based Team Building Activities

Bouncing Back From Mistakes

Encourage your team members to never allow their mistakes to paralyze them. Living in fear of making another mistake will stunt the team’s growth. Everyone makes mistakes, but successful people are able to bounce back. They will make mistakes, but they must be sure to get back on track when mistakes occur. They must keep a positive attitude in the face of mistakes and see them as opportunities for growth. Your team must persevere and focus on the future. Never live in the past. The ability to bounce back after making a mistake shows strength and resilience.

Related: Resilience Outcome Based Team Building Activities

Learn From Mistakes

Mistakes are opportunities to adapt and learn. In order to learn from a mistake, your team must look at the situation honestly. It is imperative that your team shows others, they are able to adapt and change in the face of mistakes. This skill will help your team preserve their reputation. To learn from their mistakes your team should ask themselves the following questions:

  • What went wrong?
  • How did it happen?
  • When did it happen?
  • Why did it happen?
  • How could it have been prevented?

Once you they have the answers to these questions, they will be able to adapt their actions in the future.

Overcome Mistakes By Asking For Help

You can only help your team members when they ask for it. Your team members cannot expect people to automatically know when they need them. When they do ask for help, encourage them to follow basic etiquette.

  • Ask: Do not demand that people help you or manipulate them with guilt.
  • Be straightforward: Do not be dramatic or minimize the help necessary.
  • Be thankful: Always thank friends who are willing to help you succeed.

Happy Accidents

Quote from Scott Adams

“Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.”
– Scott Adams

Not all accidents are bad. My art lecturer at university used to tell the students to look out for ‘happy accidents’ in your art making process. These happy accidents are something you did not plan to do, but the ‘mistake’ actually makes the artwork better.  Many times we think we make mistakes which are not really mistakes at all but fortuitous events brought about by a strange series of circumstances, producing an unexpected result.

The key to recognizing these happy accidents when they occur, is to be receptive and open-minded. Always keep in mind that just because something turns out different to what you expected, it does not mean it is ruined or spoiled. Many new recipes have been created because someone fouled up the mixture of ingredients only to create a delightful tasting new product.

Next time when what you deem to be an accident happens, carefully examine the results. You cannot undo the mistake so you might as well analyze it. You never know what you might come up with. Even if you cannot make use of it at the least you would have learnt from the mistake.

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