According to a recent survey by Deloitte, the top cause of stress for workers was realizing that they had made a mistake.
Of the 23,000 people surveyed, 82% said this caused them stress at work. (A challenging workload and “moments of conflict” like getting reprimanded or delivering a difficult message tied for second place, at 52%.)
This isn’t a healthy or productive situation. Mistakes are inevitable, especially if your job has grown in scope or responsibility or the pace of business has changed. Telling yourself to avoid mistakes at all costs will just lead to even more anxiety. It can also stifle your creativity (and possibly raise the anxiety levels of everyone around you).
While you can’t avoid mistakes entirely, you can increase your ability to bounce back quickly and productively after you make one. Here are six strategies to help you recover after making a mistake at the office.
Acknowledge the mistake promptly
If you hand in sales projections and your boss points out you missed the most recent quarterly data, don’t get defensive: I didn’t know you meant year-to-date! Own up to the gaffe as one professional to another: You’re right, I only included figures up to the 1st quarter. I’ll have a new table on your desk in an hour (or as soon as it can reasonably be done).
Apologize directly and personally to people who were inconvenienced
If your faulty sales projections meant that your group presentation fell flat, apologize to each member of your team after the meeting: I dropped the ball on the sales analysis. I’ll redo it and hand it in separately. I’m sorry for the mistake. Don’t denigrate yourself too much, or you risk looking like you’re trolling for sympathy—then you’d be inconveniencing your colleagues twice.
Read four more strategies in my column for Money/ Time: http://time.com/money/4476030/recover-after-office-mistake/
Originally published on December 28, 2016 by SpeakerMatch Speakers Bureau