15 Steps To Failing Forward – Give Your Team A Safe Place To Grow
In the 25 years I worked in the legal industry, I was never in a safe place to grow. And by “safe place” I mean I was never given room for error. I clearly remember the day I was promoted from working for an associate attorney to working for the managing partner of a large insurance defense firm. Finally promoted to working for king of the hill, and I had the corner office with windows! Finally a view!
My first day, he pulled me into his office and told me – in no uncertain terms – “If he missed ANY deadlines, appointments or court dates, it was all MY fault.” This was coming from the guy who handled most of the noteworthy federal defense cases for the county I lived in, was managing the firm, and had a huge high-profile class-action lawsuit with over 1,500 test plaintiffs alone and 3,800 total! Ahhhhh … the pressure!
I went from that to working in a small estate planning boutique firm where dropping the ball meant at times that we lost the client, couldn’t make payroll or the referral source was no longer on our side. Pressure!
Since working with LWP I’m in such a safe place to fail that it’s the polar opposite of any work environment I’ve ever been part of. And, I can clearly see the writing on the wall. Failure is a very humbling and formative experience, and you’ve got to own it. Through failure you can achieve true growth, so you need to own it like a boss!
It’s interesting the emails and conversations I have with members and their team, and how very apologetic they can be for the slightest things. When I hear certain terminology during coaching calls, I see between the lines that that particular firm isn’t in a place that believes in, as a famous book teaches, “Failing Forward: Turning Mistakes into Stepping Stones for Success.”
If you’ve never read the book, I’d love to highlight the 15 Steps to Failing Forward for you:
1. Realize there is one major difference between average people and achieving people.
2. Learn a new definition of failure.
3. Remove the “you” from failure.
4. Take action and reduce your fear.
5. Change your response to failure by accepting responsibility.
6. Don’t let the failure from outside get inside you.
7. Say good-bye to yesterday.
8. Change yourself, and your world changes.
9. Get over yourself and start giving yourself.
10. Find the benefit in every bad experience.
11. If at first you don’t succeed, try something harder.
12. Learn from a bad experience and make it a good experience.
13. Work on the weakness that weakens you.
14. Understand there’s not much difference between failure and success.
15. Get up, get over it, get going.
Over the next few months I’ll be doing a series that will review each of the 15 steps and dig a bit deeper into what each of them means (I’ll give you the SparkNotes). Hopefully through reading along, failure will become your friend. Subscribe to our blog (using that box on the right) to get these automatically delivered right to your inbox.
Or you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I hope you’ll join me, because this series promises to help you progress from failures that cripple to experiencing failure that empowers.
Roslyn Drotar – Implementation Coach, Lawyers With PurposePosted by Roslyn Drotar | 6 comments