Everyone makes mistakes.
But not everyone will admit making a mistake
In my experience, servant-leaders in the workplace are pretty good at admitting when they make mistakes.
Furthermore, I would argue that admitting mistakes is evidence that a person is practicing servant leadership.
Here are 5 reasons admitting mistakes might show you are a servant-leader.
- Admitting a mistake is a sign of self-awareness. Some people don’t admit a mistake because they aren’t aware that they made a mistake. Servant-leaders value self-awareness – and work to cultivate it.
- Admitting a mistake shows humility. Servant-leaders know they aren’t perfect and own up to their errors. Arrogance – the opposite of humility – is often characterized by a belief in one’s own infallibility
- Admitting a mistake builds trust. It’s a powerful way of saying, “I trust you – with information which I might otherwise prefer not to share.” Because giving trust is one of the best ways of receiving trust, admitting mistakes has an upside.
- Admitting a mistake is a prerequisite to learning. Failure is a great teacher and the best leaders learn from it. So, those who admit mistakes are already moving up the learning curve.
- Admitting a mistake shows vulnerability. Experts draw a connection between vulnerability and good leadership at work. That good leadership, in turn, has a positive effect on important things like employee engagement. *
Do you agree that admitting a mistake might show that a person is a servant-leader? What do you think of my 5 reasons? Is there something you would you add or subtract?
Let us know.
As always, we appreciate your views. Thanks!
Be sure to download our latest ebook, Quotations for Servant-Leaders. It’s free!
* Here’s more on these 5 topics:
1. Self-awareness: “5 Ways to Cultivate Better Self-Awareness”
2. Humility: “4 Reasons Humility is a Cardinal Virtue of Servant Leadership”
3. Trust: “Servant Leadership – 3 Workplace Priorities”
4. Learning: “Leadership and Learning (from Failure)”
5. Vulnerability: A good Harvard Business Review article by Emma Seppala, “What Bosses Gain by Being Vulnerable.” Plus this post, “6 New Job Tips for Servant-Leaders.”