How Owning Up To My Failures Made Me A Better Leader.

    Many leaders seem to excel in what they do since they tend to identify opportunities and challenges on time and take the right course of action. For this reason, most people associate them with success while others go the extra mile and regard them as role models. However, success doesn’t come on a silver plate. Executives go through ups and downs, figuring out the best way to maximize their output and increase sales.

    As a leader, I can say that making a mistake is normal, and those that mess up should not face criticism. People in most societies do not tolerate failure since they consider it as some form of weakness. Although that might be true to some extent, most leaders know that failure is inevitable if one needs to explore new markets, launch new products, expand a business or build a customer base. Therefore, all focused leaders are guilty of blunders, but what they do after committing a mistake matters.

    Failure can make people tarnish your name, and that is a bad thing. However, the worst thing that you should never do is to deny or justify a mistake. When you try to explain a wrong deed, you remain in a distorted reality of believing that you are always right. Such behaviour is quite harmful since it reduces one’s ability to accept opinions from colleagues, subordinates, or third parties. Consequently, it affects an individual’s reasoning process during a decision-making process, leading to disagreements and poor judgement. Here’s how admitting failures shaped Herman Kariuki leadership, personality and improved his managerial skills.

    Building relationships

    Some leadership styles, such as the top-down model, create an environment that allows executives to blame subordinates for their mistakes. As an executive, I usually investigate the cause of failure and identify the possible solution instead of pointing fingers at my staff. I value all my employees since each of them plays a unique role that contributes to achieving corporate goals. Admitting my mistakes helps me improve my relationship with employees, suppliers, contractors and other stakeholders since it takes courage and confidence to take responsibility. Handling the root cause of errors is critical since it reduces conflicts at the workplace. If you are in a managerial position, you need to specify the problem and state ways to address it since it helps the junior staff to have confidence in you. Therefore, monitoring and evaluating each process is essential because it enables you to identify policies that might be preventing you from growing your business or competing effectively.

    Reality Check Ahead

    Most managers expect a good business environment every year, but that never happens. As a leader, I have faced complex issues such as the global financial crisis, the oil crisis, the Covid-19 pandemic, and much more. Such challenges have forced many business owners to downsize or close operations due to losses. However, I was able to keep my firm running since I decided to explore new businesses that were thriving even during hard financial times. Analyzing performance is a reality check that helps executives assess the viability of their business in the next decade or two. With such knowledge, leaders can take appropriate measures to cushion their business from failure if such challenges reappear in the future.

    Apply a strength-based strategy

    Every individual has some strengths and weaknesses that can positively and negatively impact their performance respectively. In my firm, we identify each worker’s strengths and assign them tasks that best suits them. By doing so, we enable our employees to do what they love and contribute positively to our production process. Understanding your staff can lower attrition rates because the work environment makes employees self-aware and confident of their capabilities. As a result, they focus on their strengths and maximize their output, helping the firm achieve its goals.

    Take risks

    Many individuals do not realize changes in their lives because they fail to take risks. Business owners need to take risks because implementing innovative ideas and launching new products are risky affairs. I started my firm with a tight budget, and I had to minimize expenditure on some items to keep the company running. My investment was a considerable risk because I had to choose between trying a new thing and maintaining the status quo. As an inexperienced manager, I faced many challenges, but I was determined to challenge established corporations. After struggling for several months, my venture paid off, and I started realizing profits and increased return customers. However, taking risks is not enough, and those who decide to try their luck should stay vigilant to identify and fix their mistakes before things get out of hand.

    To Wrap Up

    In summary, failure is inevitable if you want to try new things, and it always leads to frustration and stress. Making a mistake is not a crime, but the way you behave after messing is what determines your public image. As a leader, I recommend that you take risks and accept your blunders as you go. Owning your mistakes makes you a better manager since it helps you figure out solutions to your problems with ease and boosts your relationships.

    Herman Kariuki
    Herman Kariuki
    Herman Kariuki is a digital marketer and proprietor at MyBusinessweekly and Khermani, covering Legal, Business, and Entrepreneurship Topics. Herman Kariuki is a Serial Entrepreneur who has worked in multiple fields in Writing, Legal, Media $ Content Advisor. He also serves as a PR specialist and business consultant who excels in the art of leveraging press for a brand with social media campaigns & digital marketing strategies like the Electronic Press Kits. Herman is an avid traveler and an enthusiastic designer who puts your thoughts into art.

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