The Mistakes of Dealing With Mistakes

14 Dec

Many businesses try to depict themselves as being nearly perfect. They quickly reject accusations and focus, instead, on instances of ideal performance. But is this attitude realistic? More importantly, is it even appealing?

Customers appreciate companies that are willing to acknowledge their mistakes and address them directly. They are also highly adept at recognizing superficiality, so prancing around touting the endless superiority of your business does little more than instill your brand’s shallowness.

Some even say that it is the flaws of a company that display its quality and character. Nobody is striving to commit errors, but mistakes do happen, and customers (for the most part) understand this. How you deal with these (hopefully) momentary shortcomings can even help set you apart from the competition.

Regarding workforce management, why should this same attitude not be extended to your employees? To accept the inevitable mistakes of your company would seem to imply that you also accept the same from your staff. Once again, that doesn’t mean setting the bar low and allowing blunders to occur in droves, but it does point out the importance of humility, compassion and empathy in the workplace.

Just like customers, employees want their managers to hear what they’re saying, show that they care about what they’re going through and that they plan to do something about it.

When a mistake occurs, it’s important to act fast. Find out what happened, why it happened and how you and your team can prevent it from happening again. To do this, you need to understand the natural humanity of your workers. Get to the root of the problem: Are they distracted by something in their personal lives? Are they struggling with an excessive workload? Are they disengaged? If so, why?

Still, it doesn’t matter how kind, understanding or humble you are if your organization keeps making the same mistake. As a manger, you need to make substantial efforts to solve problems and curtail the risk of such errors happening again. This latter point is expected by customers, because when it comes to the business world, a repeated mistake is inexcusable.

Finally, you need to communicate well and often. Ultimately, you should show care for your employees because it’s the right thing to do, and it’s good for the business.

What are some other ways managers can show empathy for making mistakes? Let us know your ideas by mentioning @SageHRMS in a tweet or dropping us a note on our Facebook page!

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