Why Failure Really Is the Great Teacher

Failure is the Best Teacher

Nobody likes to fail. Whether it’s an individual failure or a team failure, there is a lot of negativity associated with setting a goal and falling short. However, HR teams can stand out as leaders in setting the tone failure shouldn’t be feared, as long as you fail forward. That’s not to say you should set out to fail; but when the team does experience a failure, use it as a moment to teach team members how to rise above and succeed in the future.

Evaluate What Went Wrong In The Planning Process

When evaluating a failure, it helps to begin at the beginning. They say that failing to plan means planning to fail.  Were there things that you ignored, missed, overlooked? Conversely, were there details spent too much time on in the planning process to the detriment of other details?  Go back through your planning strategy to determine what went right and what went wrong and outline ways to prevent those missteps in the future.

Did Everyone Have The Tools They Needed To Succeed?

When a task, plan or initiative fails, it also helps to investigate whether the team members involved had all the necessary tools to succeed. Perhaps someone wasn’t trained well on a certain aspect of their job, maybe the computer platform couldn’t handle the data, or the team you assembled didn’t have the right skills sets. In the future, take the time to put elements into place that will facilitate success.

Determine Went Wrong In the Execution Phase?

Once the task, project or initiative was executed, where did things go wrong? Were deadlines missed, did you not have enough staff participation to make it worthwhile, did you assign the wrong people the wrong tasks?  Assess where bottlenecks, snags, lags or complications arose during execution and develop a plan to address those in the future.

Use Shortcomings To Catapult Towards Success

When you go back and examine the way in which your task or project was set up, you can start to see where the failures crept in, and from there the learning process can begin. When deconstructing the failure, walk through each mini-failure identified and ask, “How can this be prevented in the future?” 

It helps to create knowledge logs for HR tasks, so that the team can deconstruct both successes and failures in this way. By writing things down, they are more likely to remember the elements they need to think about success in the future.

Set The Standard That Failure Is Nothing To Fear

Of course, success is the desired outcome in any situation, but HR departments can set the tone for the rest of the organization that when a failure does occur. Use these situations as teachable moments to achieve success moving forward.

If you are looking for innovative ways to improve your hiring and retention processes, of if you are looking to staff your HR department with top talent who can make a positive difference in your organization, connect with the professional recruiters at Contemporary Staffing Solutions today.