Believe it or not, this is a frequent topic of conversation in our office.
Here is the truth, mistakes will be made.
Sometimes those mistakes will lead to loss of revenue or even an inadvertent compliance violation.
How do YOU as the leader of your team deal with it when something major happens?
-Do you yell?
-Do you blame?
-Do you catastrophize?
-Do you stomp around?
How does your staff respond to making a mistake?
-Do they hide it?
-Do they make excuses?
-Do they get sullen for days?
-Do they get passive-aggressive?
I have learned, the very hard way that the way the leader responds to a mistake, even if it IS ACTUALLY a really big deal, will directly impact the way the staff respond.
This week there was a pretty major mistake made at The Intentional Advisor by part of our team.
Here is the backstory…
When someone buys material from TIA, I give them lifetime access to the improvements on that material. I crafted an email to all advisors who had hired me for 1:1 consulting to give them access to Delivering on the Promise for $1. We have moved to a new email provide that is integrated with our new course delivery system.
A team member made a mistake and mislabeled a whole batch of advisors. She then sent them all the $1 course link. We didn't realize the mistake until someone was not a 1:1 consulting advisor purchased the course for a buck.
OK, so you can see the problem right? This mistake had the potential to cause a bunch of advisors to think we were a hot mess and also to lose potential participants in the course.
Years ago, I would have lost my mind. I would have huffed and puffed and felt like a victim of the circumstances. I wouldn't have gone overboard, but I would not have been pleasant to work with for a while.
After the sinking feeling in my stomach subsided, I called the person who made the mistake. She was understandably pretty upset. But within just a minute or two, I said…
"This doesn't matter. This is just a bump on the road. This is just a war-story to tell in the future when we are course creating ninjas."
"The only question is how do we address our mistake?"
And I meant it! I wasn't over the top upset. I wasn't mad at the world. Of course, I knew that she hadn't done it on purpose.
I am proud of myself.
I have learned that I have to make it safe to make mistakes in my practice and my business. We can't ask people to be independent and self-motivated and then punish them for every little thing that doesn't go right.
If we are really a team, we have to be in it together for both the wins and the losses.
I wanted to share this very hard-won win with the group, because maybe a couple of you are high-strung perfectionists like me and can identify!