3 Things you Should Learn from that Business Mistake

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You’ve heard the phrase “chalk it up to experience,” meaning instead of beating yourself up when you make a mistake, you should learn from it. But, sometimes that is easier said than done.

It’s especially important to learn from our mistakes when they affect our business, network marketing team or income. Running a successful, lucrative business does require strategy and wise decision making, but we all mess up once in a while.

As a business coach, I’ve helped all kinds of business leaders turn their businesses around and create plans that lead them to success. Often times, that involves looking at past mistakes and using them to make better decisions. Here are three things I believe we can all learn from business mistakes.

Whether it was “Praiseworthy” or “Blameworthy”

When something goes wrong, unskilled leaders start pointing fingers. There is a cause to every problem, but the key is to learn how to identify it productively so that you learn something from the mistake.

The Harvard Business Review sites “A Spectrum of Reasons for Failure.” At the bottom of the spectrum are things like testing, uncertainty, complex processes, and challenging tasks, all of which are classified as “praiseworthy.” Reasons like inadequate processes, lack of ability, inattention, and finally, deviance, are all at the top of the spectrum and classified as “blameworthy.”

Praiseworthy mistakes should be addressed and you can look back and learn how you can better approach similar situations. However, blameworthy mistakes require more attention and may require a change of processes, approaches, business strategy or personnel.

Blaming someone or something unnecessarily can ruin camaraderie, lead to a lack of enthusiasm and in essence, tear down your business. On the other hand, wisely identifying the problem can help you make your business more effective.

What your Limits are and How to Stay within Them

As much as we would like to be able to do it all, we just can’t. Whether you run a small, home-based business with just a few employees or a large operation with dozens of members, your business has some limits. In fact, learning what those limits are and staying within those bounds will actually make your business more successful.

Financial resources, the size of your team, experience level, area of expertise and business resources are just a few things that prevent you from being able to take on some projects or opportunities.

When you make a mistake, try to identify where you reached your limits. Did you take on something too big for your team? Was the new product outside of the realm of what your business specializes in or what your customers want? In many cases, you can look back at a situation and understand what held you back.

But, don’t stop there. Internalize the issue and use it to identify your boundaries. In other words, learn what kinds of projects your business excels with, the scope of opportunities you are capable of taking advantage of and how much you can do with your resources.

As you understand your limits, you can avoid future problems but also find ways to strategically grow your business. You will know what areas you need to develop so you can meet those challenges and expand your reach.

How to Prevent Mistakes and Stay Resilient

Finally, as you start to identify what contributed to the mistake, find ways to prevent it from happening again. Of course, some mistakes are unavoidable, but many situations can be avoided or at least handled in a more productive way.

This takes some retrospective thinking and the ability to recognize when you were in the wrong. In some scenarios, you may want to bring your team together to talk about what happened, get feedback from others and brainstorm ways you can avoid making the same mistake again.

It’s also important to realize that your business is resilient and that although you made a mistake, you can still more forward. Take some time to appreciate that while you faced a challenge, and may not have handled it perfectly, you are better off because you now have more experience and are preparing your business to avoid future mistakes.

I help businesses and leaders create strategic plans that help them reach their goals, despite challenges and mistakes along the way. If you are interested in learning how you can grow your business and earn more, contact me.     

About the author 

Deborah MacDonald

After almost 25 years as an entrepreneur, I continue to grow my business, my passive income streams and my wealth. And now I mentor others on their wealth journeys by teaching them how to fund their own freedom lifestyle.

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