Share failures …

failure22.jpgThere are so many ways that leaders start their weekly staff meetings. Some use ice breakers, some share successes, some share big events coming up and the like. The idea is to start on a positive note. There is nothing wrong here. However, it’s rare to insert into the agenda failures of the past week. I’d like to suggest considering doing so.

The notion of sharing failures is not to shame anyone or get folks to throw others under the bus or find fault in a process or technology. No, the primary reasons for doing so are two fold. Done correctly, the first reason is to garner team-wide support for the person that needs it. If Beth, for example,  is having issues with a customer because she is stretched too thin that week, perhaps someone else who has time can offer to help carry some of the load for Beth. The rules of sharing failures must be clear on this point. It is to get positive support before issues get to a irrevocable point. The second reason is that there is much more learning, growth and innovation from failures than successes. Making it not only okay but a requirement to shares failures allows for a healthy introspection that is hard to find when failures are discussed after the fact when it is too late. This recurring as-you-go approach can prove to be a powerful for team unity and growth.

This week, start by sharing your own failures from last week. What did you struggle with? What do you feel you could have done better? What do you wish you had? Start with yourself and invite one person each week until everyone is doing it. You will find sharing failures this way to be a very positive starter to the week. Cathartic for the person sharing, and productive to the business.

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