Let Your Employees Make Small Mistakes to Help Them Grow

When people teach a small child to walk, they usually let them try to walk across a carpeted room so they can fall, not get hurt and pick themselves up to try again. They don’t dress their child in a helmet and padded equipment then attach a safety harness to keep them from falling.

Those who supervise employees should take a similar approach: Allow for workers to make small errors so they can learn from them and try again.

Your workers won’t have the opportunity to grow as professionals if they can’t make errors and learn from them. As a leader, you can talk all you like about the errors you made in the past and how your employees can avoid them, but that won’t be as effective as letting the learn from personal experience.

The trick is, knowing where it’s okay for your employees to make mistakes.

Where employees can make mistakes

There are certain kinds of jobs and tasks where there isn’t much room for error. You can’t make a mistake in your budget for the upcoming fiscal year, for instance. Differentiate between the areas where you need to be mistake-free and where errors won’t pose a significant threat to the company.

Allowing workers to make errors here and there means putting a significant amount of trust in your team, which is a good thing. It may be difficult to give over control to other people, but it’s something good leaders do. You can’t run a successful team or a company if you must have control over everything.

It’s hard work to create a mutual, trusting connection, but by concentrating on trust during the candidate selection process it can help set up your expectations from the outset.

Creating learning opportunities

Don’t let the anxiety about making mistakes stop your staff members from going above and beyond. Most workers learn by doing and they’ll likely make some mistakes along the ways. That’s just a part of working and attempting to grow as a professional.

Constructively talking through setbacks sends a signal that its ok to try, gives staff members the chance to learn from their errors and give them permission to take ownership of their mistakes, rather than trying to cover them up or blame someone else for them.

Taking corrective action

Errors can be amazing learning opportunities for workers – but that doesn’t mean staff members should be making the same errors over and over again. After a mistake has been made, put corrective measures in place to help stop the reoccurrence of that error. Locate the root of the problem and work with the worker or even the team to develop a solution. If necessary, think about creating strict processes to make certain the error doesn’t occur again.

At Labor Temps, we support company leaders by providing them with best-fit service and talent acquisition solutions. If your organization may be in need of our services, please contact us today.