The Magic of Mistakes

When’s the last time you admitted to making a mistake? 👀

 

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Story time. Get your popcorn.

 

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Okay. So I was coworking the other day and witnessed an exchange where one leader attempted to call out another leader’s team for failure to reply to an important email.

I heard the call, ya’ll.

Her tone was pretty condescending, she was very sure this was her moment to shine (she was very hype), AND, she was absolutely wrong lol.

 

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See the thing is, they DID send the reply. Clear as day.

In fact, the reply was sent shortly after the initial email AND multiple people were copied on it 😩.

I sat and listened as she stumbled over her words while she realized in real time they did in fact reply and she was very clearly wrong.

How are you going to be loud AND wrong? 🤣

 

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A muffled, semi-apology was received but coupled with further criticism that watered down any resolution to the tense exchange. .

 

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The damage had been done. And two parties that already weren’t really vibing were further divided.

This happens all the time.

And I’m aware there are a lot of factors I don’t know.

 

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But what I do know for sure is that there is a LOT of power in mistakes, especially when we own up to them.

Because I guarantee you, this incident is going to cross her mind before she makes a bold accusation again.

 

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Admitting and even celebrating mistakes is just one research-backed way we can create psychological safety.

Some organizations even go as far as having mistake meetings to help others see how common it is but also to learn from each other’s errors, reduce problem avoidance, and escalate solutions so they can keep it moving.

The trick here is that the person admitting the mistake also has to feel that the environment is safe enough to admit it. Being met with, “I told you so’s” and other forms of embarrassment are very counterproductive to the whole psychological safety thing.

Or, if you’re already walking on pins and needles due to a series of unfortunate occurrences, and feel that any additional error will leave you packing boxes – this admitting fault thing can be really hard.

 

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So, if you have our Psychological Safety Checklist (I’ll link it below), you know that we approach things a little differently over here. We encourage you to explore the deeper meaning behind your actions so that you can have more grace for yourself, and in turn, for others.

These exchanges are GOING to happen, we can’t control that. But how we respond, that’s where the magic is.

 

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So I’m going to leave you with a few prompts to reflect on the next time you’re inevitably on either side of a mistake:

✍🏽What can I take away from this experience?

✍🏽If I were the one to make this mistake, how would I want someone to respond to me?

✍🏽The last time I made a mistake, did I own it? Did I attempt to justify it?

✍🏽Am I proud of my response? How could I respond differently to this situation next time?

✍🏽Do people tend to feel safe bringing problems/mistakes to my attention?

✍🏽Am I more focused on being right or doing right?

Learn more about our approach and *why* we have you asking yourself these questions in our Psychological Safety Checklist!

And remember, we’re all learning and trying our best to create a great day.

Take care of yourself. Take care of each other. And create a great day!

Amanda + Team Mako Mindfulnesshashtag

MakoMindfulness hashtagPsychologicalSafety hashtagStressManagement hashtagLeadership hashtagProfessionalDevelopment hashtagCopingStrategies hashtagTrainingAndDevelopment

THE MAKO METHOD™ RESOURCE GUIDES

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The Mako Method™ for Psychological Safety – The Ultimate Checklist

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