Reading an article on Psychology Today got me thinking about some situations I’ve seen, where negative business owners stood in the way of their own small business management success. Now don’t go thinking that you’re always positive, never blame-shifting or complaining, because we all do, even imperceptibly, sometimes. Read on!
Many people just starting out in a new business, feel insecure. They soon realist that they have had oversights and failed to make provision for certain issues. Sometimes a business has worked well for some time, issues cropped in and weren’t addressed, and just systematically became progressively worse.
If you’ve ever watched Gordon Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares, you would’ve seen some real life examples of this: Business owners would call Gordon in to come see why they are not making profits. In turn, he would be subjected to terrible food, horrible service and a filthy kitchen. During conference with the owners, they would blame the chefs and the waiters for everything. After substantial addressing of the various issues, and some brow-beating, the owners would realise that they are actually to blame for the way the business is going. Sounds unfair? It’s not!
Think about it – as a business owner YOU and you alone are in charge of what happens in your company. Employees may make mistakes, but it’s up to you to fix it, and prevent it from happening again. You are the BOSS and while people under your charge may mess up, it’s still in your control. You can complain and blame others, but unless you do something to address the problems, your business won’t succeed – and for that, you can’t blame anyone but yourself.
“More people would learn from their mistakes if they weren’t so busy denying them.” ~ Harold J Smith, actor.
Why Should You Accept Responsibility Instead of Blame-Shift?
In small business management it’s important for you to understand how to acknowledge, assess and deal with problems that crop up rather than sweeping them under the rug. If you don’t do it, you will see greater issues that can be detrimental to your business.
There are some common issues that contribute to mistakes in business, including:
But those items are still your control as a business owner. Think about it – YOU chose the location for your business, and you can make adjustments if local competition is too stiff. You purchase the equipment – good or bad and you hire, train and control your staff. It’s all down to you to make it work, if only you can stop blame-shifting for a moment.
As a good leader, it is important to be able to assess the various aspects that contribute to mistakes, and then address them straight away and learn from them as they occur.
Benefits of Acknowledging Small Business Management Mistakes, and Fixing Them
One might think that people will think poorly of you if you make business mistakes, or that it will negatively affect business. Actually, it has exactly the opposite effect. Here are some ways in which acknowledging mistakes can boost your business:
1. Boosting Your Own Confidence
By acknowledging mistakes, you will be able to nip any recurrences in the bud. Nobody wants to admit to the same mistake more than once. This will help you grow as a leader and business owner.
2. Making You a Better Leader
As a leader who can quickly pick up on problems and then address them with your staff or customers, you will become leader that people can look up to. Companies that address issues swiftly are regarded more highly than those where the owner ignores problems, or shifts the blame to the environment, staff, suppliers, or even customers. Staff respect good leaders better too.
3. Taking Your Business to a Next Level
Sometimes a business can stagnate simply because you have made the mistake of not bringing any innovative ideas to the table. Just like a plant, a business needs constant watering (new ideas, or improvement on existing ideas) to keep on growing. Going through a period of stagnation can push the business owner to take some stock, do some introspection and come up with new ideas to boost the company beyond what was thought possible.
Will You Blame-Shift, or Will You Use Mistakes as a Launching Pad for New Big Business Growth?
By identifying issues with the various aspects of your small business management, you can learn from those mistakes and enhance staff training, or find better ways to manage inventory, quality and service delivery. You can use negative issues to your advantage, if only you will acknowledge problems, rather than shifting the blame elsewhere.
I’d love you input on how you dealt with problems in your business that you didn’t think you had any control over. Please leave a comment below.