Monday, January 10, 2011

Learn From My Mistakes

I remember my mother constantly telling me that she wanted me to learn from her mistakes.  As a kid, I naturally assumed that meant she didn't want me to have as much fun as she had when she was young.  We rarely hear managers or co-workers say, don't make the same mistake I did.  I wonder why that is?  It certainly isn't because we never make mistakes at work.  Is it because we don't want people to know the mistakes we made?  I don't know about your workplace, but I'm betting that people know more than they let on.  There is even a leadership ideal out there that we need to allow our subordinates to fail forward.  But if we never use our own mistakes as teaching tools, are we really giving our subordinates the freedom to fail or are we just setting them up for failure.  I learned today, that sometimes the only thing you can say to another person is I know how you feel and my only advice, unsolicited as it is, is don't do what I did because it failed me in this way.  It may not put you on the fast track to CEO, but it will make you a better peer mentor. 

Hope your Tuesday is a good one!