My name is Martin and I make mistakes

I made a mistake with a client contract last year.

Well nearly.

Actually I listened to others who told me I’d got it wrong. The key word here is “listened”. So I put it right before it was too late.

To any clients (past and present) out there reading this, I know this will totally undermine your confidence in me. I make mistakes. There, I’ve said it.

“My name is Martin and I make mistakes”.

But surely I should have stopped making mistakes long ago.

I’m 63 for goodness sake. Maybe at 18? 40? 50?

Looking back I’m pretty sure I got everything 100% right until I became a parent. Then the challenges came so thick and fast that I rapidly made up for all that lost time. After that, mistakes set in on a pretty regular basis.

(For non-British readers: we Brits refer to the previous paragraph as “ironic”. We think it’s funny. It’s just the way we are).

Actually, I think we all know we made mistakes as children. That’s OK. We learned from them. It’s all in the past.

I’ve reached an age now where I’m making mistakes again. And that’s OK too. My ego can stand it.

It’s the years in between where we don’t make mistakes. Funny that isn’t it? Could that be about ego as well?

I get to coach some great people. If they are still with me after the admission above. It’s the ones who are open to challenge who grow the most. The ones who are open to the idea of not being perfect. Of making mistakes in fact.

I used to be coached myself (it’s all coming out now). And I remember after I had made some particularly confident assertion, my coach raising one eyebrow and saying “Really?”

Ah. Got me there. OK, maybe there is another way of thinking about it.

My contract last year came out fine in the end. Because (and only because) I listened to others.

My name is Martin and I make mistakes. And that’s OK.