Turning your mistakes into your biggest successes
I was lucky enough in my early career to join The Gluttonous Gardener when it was just the boss and I, ten years on I left a very different company that was substantially bigger and a completely different, wonderful beast! This natural, organic growth has given me a wealth and breadth of knowledge from being so hands on but also from ten years of occasionally getting things wrong (once or twice very wrong) in the process of growing the company. The one thing I was always sure to tell any new member of staff on my team was that mistakes and errors are bound to happen and that actually your biggest achievements, learning and progression can come as a result of that one mistake so not to fear making them. I've always been a very optimistic person and feel it is so vitally important to make the most of your mistakes and to learn from them, some of our greatest technical advances and product developments came from often what seemed at the time to be huge blunders!
So often in a small company you are running at 100 mph doing everything from the marketing, product creation to ensuring there is toilet paper in the loo for the staff, the list of jobs for any business owner can be wildly varied. Mistakes are bound to happen and when anything goes wrong so often the first reaction is to panic, however if you can take five minutes to breathe and take a step back it will work to your advantage. Besides rectifying the problem in order to move on, keep working it is really important to understand what went wrong. If you can understand the reasoning behind your mistake it can help you firstly to avoid making it in the future but more importantly to identify any way to improve on what you have been doing. I have always found that the importance of embracing mistakes and also encouraging staff to do the same is that they are not as scared or hesitant to come to you when things do go wrong rather than trying to cover things up which could ultimately lead to things getting worse. If staff feel comfortable in admitting that a mistake has been made it will ensure most importantly that a resolution is sorted quickly to avoid further damage. It will also mean rather than the issue being brushed under the carpet an open conversation about process which could again inadvertently lead to innovation and new ideas can take place. This is ultimately of great benefit to your company but also a positive and rewarding environment for your staff which is incredibly important.
I take great pleasure in helping other small, wonderful companies grow and to learn from their mistakes that tey will inevitably be made and learn to utilise the experience in order to create a positive outcome.