Mistakes are inevitable in the workplace. Even with careful planning and execution, errors will still be made. But you can often negate much of the impact by knowing how to handle this situation. Here are some tips for doing so.
Everyone Makes Mistakes – It’s How You Move Forward
As soon as you realize your error, you’ll likely feel a mix of emotions such as shock, embarrassment, guilt or frustration. Those feelings are normal, but you shouldn’t beat yourself up about it for too long. Remember that every single person—no matter their position—makes mistakes. So, try not to take it personally. Instead, let the emotions pass over you, and then start moving forward toward a solution.
Give Your Boss a Heads Up
The odds are good your slip-up will affect other people within your company. So, the sooner you come forward about it the better. Once you’ve collected yourself, and tell your boss about it. This will hopefully limit any damage that occurs and they’ll let you know which steps you can take to resolve the situation.
Be Open and Transparent About What Happened
Patrick Allan offers some solid advice in Lifehacker. “When you go to tell your boss what happened, honesty is the best policy. Don’t let big mistakes get bigger by pretending that nothing happened.” It’s all about owning up to it and taking responsibility. In many cases, your boss and co-workers will even commend you for doing so. Also, be sure to apologize to anyone who’s impacted.
Examine What Happened
Finally, you’ll want to take a good hard look at what caused the mistake to determine how it can be prevented from happening again in the future. As long as you’re able to take something valuable and learn a lesson, a mistake can actually be beneficial in the long run. Keep this in mind and figure out how you can use this to become a better employee moving forward.
No matter how skilled and professional you may be, you’re bound to slip-up at some point. But this doesn’t have to lead to catastrophic consequences. As long as you know how to handle your mistakes, you can get things back on track and use it as a learning tool.
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