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I've made a big mistake at work!


Q - I’ve made a big mistake at work which has harmed my team and the company.  What can I do?

A - You have already taken the first step - by accepting responsibility.  Everyone makes mistakes, and I believe those who don’t admit to them don’t learn as much as those who do!  The question I think you are asking is “can I recover from this mistake?”  That depends on how big is “big”!  So your next steps need to answer that question - hold a review of the incident with all affected parties and understand what went well (don’t just focus on the negatives), what you would do differently next time and what you have learned.  Also assess the impact of the mistake, again with input from all affected parties.  If you can then produce an action plan to correct it or make sure it doesn’t happen again, then you will gain respect for this honest approach.  If not then you may have to consider your options more carefully.