When you think about the “perfect manager,” what do you imagine? Chances are, the leader that you have in your mind is not actually perfect. They have made mistakes – they do make mistakes. That is what makes them more relatable. When someone is so seemingly perfect, it can feel intimidating or unapproachable.
Instead of pretending as though you have never made mistakes in your professional career, you can benefit your team by actually being open about your failures in the past. In this article, we will take a look at some of the main reasons why imperfections in leadership are actually incredibly important.
Mistakes are a learning opportunity
You did not just wake up and understand how to successfully do your job. In fact, mistakes probably played an important role in gaining your experience – after all, these always tend to be the lessons that stick with us the longest. As a leader, it is important you demonstrate to your team that it is okay to try something and have it not work out as planned. The important thing is that you apply what you learn to the next situation. By sharing your personal experiences, you can also help your team avoid some potential pitfalls.
Mistakes are a way to take (calculated) risks
If you have never failed at anything, chances are you have not actually done all that much. If a business is going to succeed, risks are necessary. Behind any innovation is inherent risk. If you have a team that is terrified of doing anything wrong, you will never get any bold ideas. As a leader, it is important that you demonstrate the importance of taking leaps of faith and the fact that you do not expect perfection from anyone – including yourself.
Mistakes are a way to connect
If you appear to be infallible, your team might look up to you, but they will have a difficult time relating to you. Talking about mistakes that you have made in the past will deepen the trust in your employee relationships. It will also help you better communicate with your team, as people feel as though they are able to open up and be vulnerable around you.
Imperfections are nothing to be ashamed of. In fact, when it comes to leadership, they can be incredibly important. Not only do mistakes help us learn, but they can push us toward greatness and help us build stronger connections with our team.