18 — Hiccups are no big deal
It’s important for managers to learn which mistakes are important and which are mere hiccups.
A hiccup is here and gone. It is not permanent. A single hiccup does no lasting damage and few people will remember it.
A business hiccup is (for example):
- An e-mail sent without its intended attachment.
- A typographical error in a report.
- The wrong date on a document.
- Missing a minor deadline.
There are major chasms between hiccups and certified disasters. It is a frightful
part of human nature that some people cannot differentiate between the two extremes. A temporarily misplaced report arouses the same reactions in some people as does an account lost to a competitor that shouldn’t have been lost.
For active, multi-tasking managers, hiccups are like mosquitoes in swampy areas. They are going to pop up no matter what you do. Business hiccups, while aggravating, don’t make or break careers. Those who do the hiccupping or evaluate their effect on the business may think so, however.
Swallow the hiccup by acknowledging it as a mistake, apologize if necessary, and get on to more important issues.
There will be bumps in your career path. A bump is a bump. Don’t make it bigger than it is and don’t allow it to ruin the journey.
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