4 Steps to Administrative Damage Control

If you make a critical mistake on the job, you can feel like the world is about to end. You may even think that you’re on the chopping block at work. In some cases, a big mistake might end in termination, but not always. Either way, you have to do damage control.

Process Your Emotions

The first step after a major mistake is to process your own emotions. You’ll feel a lot of things, including anger and sadness. It’s important to let yourself feel those and process it before you can move on. It’s upsetting, so you shouldn’t dwell on it for too long, but spending some time dealing with your disappointment can help you handle the fallout from other people in a more mature way.

Accept Responsibility

Always accept responsibility for what happened. You know what happened, and there’s no victory in blaming someone else. It’s okay that you’re embarrassed. It can be challenging to own up to it, but a professional must deal with the consequences. Now is the time to apologize directly to the individuals most affected by the mistake.

Take Action

Once you’ve forgiven yourself and taken responsibility, it’s time to begin solving the problem. Openly discuss what happened and be honest with the details. Then it would help if you offered to fix the mistake at any necessary cost. Once you have taken the corrective action, it’s time to move on. After the solution has been discussed and implemented, you begin your recovery process. And don’t forget to share what you’ve learned with your team so the same mistake doesn’t happen again.

Demonstrate Your Commitment

You should also focus on repairing your relationship with your boss. Encourage them to consider how you have learned from the mistake, and it won’t happen again. Show that you can own up to your errors. If they were to let you go, they can’t guarantee that the next person would handle it as well. Prove that you’re an essential part of the team because of, not despite how you handled the situation. Stay valuable even in the face of mistakes.

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