The Top 5 Mistakes of Unsuccessful Leaders

Mistakes that don’t hurt don’t matter. The worst mistakes are the ones that hurt others. The trouble with leadership is your mistakes always hurt others.

The top 5 mistakes of unsuccessful leaders:

  1. Not being open to criticism.
  2. Trying to hide mistakes.
  3. Not making decisions.
  4. Failing to explain objectives.
  5. Telling people how to do things rather than telling them what needs to be done and letting them figure out how to do it.

Good and bad:

Someone said,

“If you don’t make mistakes you don’t make anything.”

In other words, the fear of making mistakes hinders, delays, even stops forward movement.

The best mistakes are learning experience that aren’t repeated.

The top 5 positive behaviors of great mistake-makers:

  1. Exploration. Good mistake-makers innovate; poor ones repeat and stagnate.
  2. Learning and adapting quickly.
  3. Enjoyment. Those who can’t learn and adapt can’t enjoy life.
  4. Clear perception. Willingness to make mistakes frees leaders from pretending everything’s ok. They see things as they are not as they wish them to be.
  5. Increasing efficiency and effectiveness as time passes.

Bonus: Humility; the behavior that makes all others effective.

The top mistake of team-leaders:

Weinzimmer and McConoughey say, “…drama mismanagement derails a leader’s ability to manage teams.” (The Wisdom of Failure)

According to Weinzimmer and McConoughey leaders contribute to overly dramatic atmospheres when they create dysfunctional harmony by:

  1. Bullying with intimidating tactics or demeaning comments.
  2. Trying to be liked by everyone.
  3. Insisting everyone likes each other all the time. The need to preserve the appearance of harmony leads to passive-aggressive behaviors within teams.
  4. Mismanaging competition within teams that leads to divisiveness.

What lessons have you learned from your mistakes?

Specifically, how do leaders inflate drama in the workplace. How can they deflate it?