Owning successes, owning errors

If you always, only do what you are already good at, you will not get better. Because you’re refusing to fail, you’re also not giving yourself a chance to succeed—just to stay so-so.

There’s plenty of so-so in the world, and if that’s all you want to be, I can get so-so anywhere. I don’t have to go out of my way to get your so-so service. I don’t need to stand in a line to purchase your so-so product. Guaranteed mediocrity is one certainty I can live without.

Make sense?

Stretch yourself.

This was a conversation I had yesterday with a new client…

then I read this post by Seth Godin.

Darn, I think he’s poaching my clients.


There was a little more to the conversation with my client. In many companies, staff seem to be looking for someone else to blame. Joe didn’t show up for work. Sandra didn’t proofread the copy. Ted told the customer we couldn’t…

Truth is, almost always, “it” didn’t happen (whatever it was). Fred could have made “it” happen, but it was more important to Fred to make Joe-Sandra-Ted look bad than to make the company look good to the customer.

(Maybe Fred is you.)

A shame, that. So I think part of giving yourself a chance to succeed—as a company—is telling Fred you don’t want to listen to him hand off failure. Own it, and Fred can own the successes, too.

There’ll be more success to own if everyone knows that going beyond so-so is expected, and so is going beyond looking for someplace else to lay the blame.

Ready to try—even if you might fail—and own the consequences in 2010? I wish you a year of 99 failures and 1 fabulous success!


Screw up! and be well,

Kelly Erickson