I wrote this post after coming off a daily ‘stand-up’ call where one Developer admitted he “didn’t know what he was doing” because he’s covering for one of our UI Developers while she’s off , and a DBA told us we weren’t seeing the data we expected that morning because he ran the wrong package by mistake.
It got me thinking about how it’s important to encourage an atmosphere where people aren’t afraid to talk about the mistakes they’ve made.
No-one admonished these people for saying these things. We respect someone for being open about the fact that they made a mistake, and then fixed it. We admire someone for actively stepping out of their comfort zone to work on something they’re not used to – it broadens their skills and reduces the number of single points of failure in our team – which in turn helps to keep our work flowing.
Whilst failure can be bad – it is also a chance to learn, and improve. It’s okay to make mistakes, and to admit when you don’t know the best way to do something, as long as you learn from it!