How could this happen to me? Ever have one of those moments when it feels like, no matter how prepared you are, things just go wrong. They do. It happens to all of us.
Most often, we only see and read about all the happy and successful things that entrepreneurs are experiencing. That’s just fine and dandy – but how do I ever develop my skills to handle things when they all go wrong? Because it does happen and it happens to each and every one of us.
I just had an experience recently that prompted this article because most of my clients and people who know me look at me and say ‘well, it’s easy for you’. In many cases and situations, yes, it is easy for me because I have studied, and learned, and implemented and know what I am doing. Yet, there are times when things do go wrong –they go very wrong!
So then what? Here are a few steps that I follow each time to get beyond the ‘horrors’ of the errors – so pay attention and keep this handy because there will come a time when you will need this information.
TIP #1: ‘FESS UP AND FIX IT.
I learned this step very early on from one of my most incredible mentors, Lou Tice. In an in-service session once, he showed us a video tape of the Blue Angels as they prepped for a flight demonstration. In that video tape (which, by the way, you can access on YouTube), the leader in the meeting spoke about this very thing. Mistakes will happen. (well,they happen when people actually take action on anything!). It’s critical, in that instance, that you ‘fess up and fix it. And that’s exactly what I do. TAKE RESPONSIBILITY AND OWNERSHIP. No one ever died from taking responsibility for making a mistake.
TIP #2: BE SURE YOU ARE SURROUNDED WITH A GREAT TEAM
Again, in the instance of the Blue Angels training video, it was acknowledged that mistakes affect everyone on the team. Be sure you are surrounded by amazing team members. In the experience I had recently, my phenomenal manager, Denise, stepped in and handled the guest expert call – welcomed my special guest, made her feel special, and took charge. Phew. THAT is the kind of team member you want to have. HIRE WELL, LET GO AND LET PEOPLE STEP UP TO THE PLATE.
TIP #3: FIND THE HUMOR IN IT AND MOVE ON
This is one of the biggest mistakes most people make – they dwell in the situation. Listen – in most cases, the work we do is not life or death. And everyone does make mistakes, and that includes me. Was this ideal? NO. Was I embarrassed? YES. Did anyone die? NO.
Then move on. I admitted to the mistake (didn’t recognize that I had moved into a different time zone the night before ……hey, it happens!). I acknowledged and celebrated my team member who stepped up and took charge. Then we laughed about it. Hey, I had even texted both the guest expert AND my team member earlier that morning acknowledging the up-coming call. Too funny!
RECOGNIZE THAT WE ARE ALL HUMAN! GET OVER IT AND MOVE ON.
One of the reasons many entrepreneurs fail and give up in business is because they strive for perfection. Well – NEWS FLASH – there is no such thing. It’s all about progress. Live and learn. And the one thing I would add is to share your mistakes and experiences with others. It really does help to inspire, encourage and teach people additional skills for growth and success.
MAKE MISTAKES AND BECOME A BETTER ENTREPRENEUR!