All Articles Leadership What would you rather have a team member do?

What would you rather have a team member do?

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SmartPulse — our weekly nonscientific reader poll in SmartBrief on Leadership — tracks feedback from more than 170,000 business leaders. We run the poll question each Tuesday in our e-newsletter.

Last week, we asked: Would you rather have a team member …

  • Make decisions and make mistakes: 96.18%
  • Make no decisions and leave that up to you: 3.82%

Please make a mistake. It’s pretty clear we want our team members to take the initiative, take action and move things forward, even if they make mistakes. It is incumbent upon us as leaders to ensure that, when they do make mistakes, we realize we gave them the latitude to take action — handling the mistakes in that context accordingly. While we need to hold them accountable for the mistake, we also need to ensure they learn from it and do so in a way that we don’t make them afraid to make more mistakes in the future.

Mike Figliuolo is managing director of thoughtLEADERS and author of “One Piece of Paper: The Simple Approach to Powerful, Personal Leadership.”