We’ve all been there.
Maybe it was a wrong hiring decision.
Maybe you invested in the tool from hell.
Maybe you opted for a direction that caused business to nosedive.
Yes, mistakes in business are all too common and when you’re running a small business, they can be costly in terms of both cost, energy and peace-of-mind.
Here is how I’ve learnt to correct mistakes and wrong choices in the last 6 odd years of running multiple businesses:
Acknowledge the Mistake
The first step is realizing that you’ve made a mistake. How do you do that? Sometimes, it’s clear and right in your face but at other times, you may chalk up the delays or denials to a learning curve that comes with any new direction or decision.
However, give everything a time period for settling down and showing results. Whether it is a new hire, a new direction or a new tool, it needs to show that its worth your time , money and energy.
I generally give everything a 90-day learning curve period and if post that, I still find myself stressed and overwhelmed about it, it’s time to acknowledge that I’ve made a mistake.
Figure Out the Why
Once I know that mistakes have been made, it’s time to figure out the why. There are 2 reasons for this- one, knowing the why will help you avoid the same mistake in the future and two, it will help you fix it faster.
For instance, if you know that you’ve made a mistake by paying for an expensive piece of equipment that doesn’t add to the bottom line and instead, is a time and money sink, figuring out why you made the mistake of doing this will help you NOT rush into another expensive purchase and instead, explore other areas of solving your core pain area.
Fix The Problem and Make Your Peace
This is probably the toughest. Fixing the problem may sometimes, require tough conversations, tears of frustration and even, sleepless nights but I like to do it with the Band-Aid approach. Just pull it off and fix it. Don’t procrastinate over fixing the problem because it’ll only get worse for you and your business. Fix it. Make your peace with it. And then, don’t dwell on it. Just move on.
Finally and most importantly, learn your lessons from this mistake. Go over the “why” behind the mistake once again. Learning from our mistakes is the best way to grow as an entrepreneur and as a person. It shapes who we are and influences our trajectory in the small business sphere. So, like we tell our kids, “learn your lessons well.”
Have you made any business mistakes? What lessons did YOU learn from them?