Imagine this: an organization where employees make mistakes and instead of being punished, they are rewarded!
I heard a story about a senior executive at Coke who made a decision that cost the company $2 million. He wrote his resignation letter and handed it to his boss. Instead of accepting the resignation the boss said, "I just spent two million dollars on your development - go back to work!"
Now whether this story is true or not. A place where mistakes are tolerated, instead of punished, is a place where employees are more likely to:
- Discover creative solutions: push the boundaries of "acceptable" answers to where competitors do not dare to go
- Disagree with leadership: improve solutions by discussing other options
- Learn from mistakes: hold debriefs of what was right and wrong instead of hiding mistakes
For organizations this means increased profits. And isn't that what we all want?
Review your practices - what do you do when someone makes a mistake? How can you make it a safe place to learn from mistakes?
You also may want to read: How to Treat Employees so They Don't Want to Leave
Contact me Valerie.MacLeod@HainesCentre.com