In the past 10 months we have experienced a lot of loss. Small businesses have been rocked by a virus that none of us anticipated at the turn of the New Year last year. We have experienced the loss of those we considered as family as colleagues have lost jobs, we have shuttered offices and storefronts and hunkered down to virtual everything. We have balanced children outside their normal comfort zones and learning environments. Many of us are trying to figure out the loss of income, health benefits and other things that underpinned us and for which we took for granted would be there through whatever may have come. The past year is a catalog of loss.
But We Should Have Won
But for many of us, we are learning about loss of a battle we thought we should have won. And here, there are lessons for businesses on the types of employees we want in our future endeavors. There are lessons for us as individuals. There are lessons for our children on the people we want them to grow up to be.
Lessons of Childhood
For many of us, we learned this lesson in T-Ball and from every single coach we had after that. Sometimes you lose. And when that happens, you congratulate the winners. You review the mistakes you may have made. Analyze the missed opportunities. You practice for the next game and pick yourselves up to try to win the next time. None of us had coaches who told us to throw out the results, change the score and declare it was all stolen.
As business entrepreneurs, we do this every day. We win some and lose others. If we were enraged with each lost sale we would be out of business by now. What we should do (and probably are doing) is figuring out why we lost the sale/job/client so that we correct for that in the future. We need to look for the same traits in people we hire. They must be able to learn from loss and correct for it and move forward. We don’t get to just change the end of the game.
It is time to review our responses to the losses of this past year. Congratulate the winners. To stop being paralyzed by what has happened and unable to accept the new facts. It is time to take a breath, find employees who will breathe with us and take a step forward into 2021.