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  • Why You Should Document Your Failures

    Do you do this today?

    Do you take the time to document your failures?

    Or, do you sweep past them?

    My recommendation … take the time!

    It’s not to memorialize them or make them part of your LinkedIn profile (but, they may be useful for interviews and mentoring). Rather, document your failures to learn from them.

    “It’s failure that gives you the proper perspective on success.”
    ~ Ellen DeGeneres

    Take the time to document your failures

    Spend a few minutes to really think about the following points. This isn’t the time to blame others. That might be part of the process and it can often be cathartic, but this is the time to identify, understand, and evaluate.

    As Stephen Covey once said, “I am not a product of my circumstances. I am a product of my decisions.” If your decisions caused you to work with specific people or companies … those points should go into your understanding process.

    Take time to evaluate these points objectively:

    • What worked?
    • What Didn’t?
    • Can you determine why? (consider the SSK model for evaluating scenarios)

    It may be painful. No one likes to fail. (well, most people don’t like to fail. Some seem to have made an art of it). But, that’s a different story.

    When you document your failures:

    • It’s a Learning Experience
    • It’s a Teachable Moment
    • When you make a mistake … remember this one thing: Own It!

    This isn’t to say you need to take the blame for every foible and failing. Rather, if you were in a position to influence an action and through a fault on your end something went wrong … Own It.

    When you do you will stand out in your career. And, as noted in this post OMG I just made a HUGE error … you can take one critical step and just Own It! You will earn respect and set yourself apart from those that choose to blame.

    Bonus: Own it … AND … have a proposed solution at the ready.

    Go ahead … Document your Failures.

    “We are all failures – at least the best of us are.”
    ~ J.M. Barrie

    You’ll be better for it.

    • You’ll know what you can do.
    • You’ll have a better perspective on how that particular failure (aka experience) worked.
    • You’ll be a better leader too.
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    Jeff is an expert in the Enterprise Content Management industry. He brings over 20 years of Channel Sales, Partner Marketing and Alliance expertise to audiences around the world in speaking engagements and via his writing. He has worked for Microsoft, Kodak, and K2. He is currently consulting with Microsoft and partners to drive Community Engagement and Alliances. Follow him on Twitter @jshuey or on LinkedIn: in/JeffShuey

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    Posted in Career Development, Personal Branding, Reputation Management
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