How to Overcome Failure at Work
There are few things that feel worse than failing an important task at your job. Yet, everyone makes mistakes at one time or another. The key to success isn’t by never failing; it’s by learning how to effectively work through failure when it happens.
Overcoming failure can be achieved by implementing a few key strategies:
The worst possible thing you can do is try to cover up, make excuses, or blame someone else for your errors. As soon as you’ve realized your mistake, tell your boss immediately. Your superiors will likely find out the truth regardless of what you tell them, and they will respect you far more for falling on the sword than if you attempt to shirk responsibility.
Be Part of the Solution
Don’t just confess your sins and leave your boss with the damage control. Do your part to fix the problem and recover with flair. Whether that means putting in extra hours on your own or collaborating with others as a team, making a concerted effort to salvage the situation can mitigate the initial sting of your failure.
Determine Why You Failed
Once the situation has passed, review the events leading to the failure to see where you went wrong and what you could have done better. It is also extremely important to listen to your superior’s criticism. It may be difficult to listen to, but view it as an opportunity to improve yourself. This is when you learn from your mistakes, making it the most important part of the process!
Follow Up with a Win
There’s no need to let your failure linger; get back in the saddle right away by starting a new project or undertaking that you can really shine on. It’s a great way to regain your confidence and demonstrate to your superiors that you really care about contributing to the company’s success.
When all is said and done, make sure you forgive yourself for your shortcomings. Everyone fails at one point or another, but it’s how you react and recover from it that makes all the difference in growing as a professional and having a successful career.