It seems like every day we read online or in print media about another famous person or business leader who commits self-sabotage. It’s as if they can’t help it. There is something about success that turns certain people against themselves. You would think getting to the top of the mountain in life would be its […]
Mistakes are a part of life. As the saying goes, “sometimes we are our own worst enemy.” I’ve seen many good leaders travel down a “rat trap” of their own making. Often this is done with the best of intentions, but the results usually have nothing to do with the original intention behind them. The […]
There are many things in life beyond our realm of control, but you get to decide how you behave. You can take the high road or low road. You follow the belief that two wrongs don’t make a right or you can escalate the pattern of bad behavior. You can allow people to continually stretch your moral/ethical boundaries or you can stick to them. You can play the victim or move on. You get to decide who is in your social circle and who isn’t. I listened to a speaker utter the phrase many years ago that, “we are what we tolerate” and it resonated with me right away. We are also what we continually do and who we do it with.
We all get in our way sometimes and leaders are no different. Just because we know we shouldn’t do something doesn’t always mean we won’t do it. However, not all mistakes are created equal. There are fifteen things a leader should strive never to do:
Fear can be a destabilizing emotion in organizations. It limits risk taking, inhibits action and worst of all creates a cover your a** (CYA) mentality which results in countless hours of wasted energy. One the biggest fears we all grapple with is the fear of being wrong and/or making mistakes. Far too many employees would rather do nothing or rigorously defend the status quo instead of going out a limb and trying something new or different. As a result of these fears, most organizations are stuck in a survival mode because success almost always involves having courage and taking risks.
There is a great benefit to working with a wide variety of clients for a number of years. You start to recognize patterns; seeing what works and what gets organizations in trouble.
“Pride does goeth before the fall.” It never ceases to amaze me how many people especially leaders can’t admit it when they are wrong. It’s almost as if the sheer fact of admitting their mistakes will make them weak and vulnerable to others. Our last president couldn’t even come up with one mistake when frequently queried about his handling of two major wars. In multiple press conferences you could tell there was an inner struggle going within him and defensiveness about what to say or not say. The press was quite frankly stunned by his lack of a response. I don’t for second believe he didn’t have anything to offer he just couldn’t be seen publicly doing it.
All successful people that I know learn from their mistakes. In fact, it is often a big mistake or two that ends up being a pivotal point in their career. If you aren’t making mistakes then you aren’t taking enough risks or pushing yourself hard enough to get a true understanding of your potential.
Daily Leadership Thought #50 – Questions To Ask Yourself When Confronted With An Outcome You Didn’t Want
Things won’t always go your way and that’s okay – it makes you human.
If you don’t know the answer be honest about it and seek out help