March 21, 2011

Are You Ready to Claim the Right Things You’ve Done?

published this at 7:14 am

We’re Awfully Good at Debriefing Failures and Just Toasting Our Success

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It takes a team to achieve a major business initiative. The research, the trials, the final product, the sampling effort, the trade shows, the tests and metrics, the PR, marketing, and social media effort designed amplify the buzz all took people, time, money, resources invested where it counts.

And when that sort of investments fails, we’re all over it to figure out where it went wrong. We hold meetings to debrief our choices, our missteps, and errors like so many grains of broken glass ground down to sand. In the name of learning from our mistakes we own our loses like so many merit badges. Sometimes we beat the losing horse until it’s long past dead with a mantra never to forget or to repeat the mistakes we made again.

But when we win, we toast to our success and move ahead.
What if we put the same rigor to debriefing our success?

How to Claim the Right Things You’ve Done

We’re great about learning from our losses. We’re not so great a learning from our success. A quick look at Bloom’s taxonomy will show that what we often do when we debrief a losing situation is we work all of the way up from knowledge through evaluation of what didn’t work.


Suppose we followed that toast to our success with an equally granular discussion of what worked with our success? It might look like this.

Raise that toast to your success. Then ask the six simple questions to claim what you’ve won.
The moments of reflection that bring you to the answers are the time you need to incorporate, internalize, and own what you’ve done — to move the “winning behavior” from a possibility into a natural response.

The evaluation of the win is the way to claim your rewards, to own them, and to leverage that learning from then on.
When you own your success, it shows every time you walk into a room. That’s how claiming rewards from success leverages itself into more success.

The good news is we can all go back — alone or with our teams — and claim our rewards for every success we’ve ever won.

Not everything we learn has to come from what we do wrong. Are you ready to learn from every right thing you’ve done?

Be irresistible.

–ME “Liz” Strauss
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Filed under Blog Comments, Business Life, Marketing /Sales / Social Media, Motivation, Successful Blog, Writing | 9 Comments »

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9 Comments to “Are You Ready to Claim the Right Things You’ve Done?”

  1. March 21st, 2011 at 7:25 am
    chris bartlett said

    Great angle for yet another way to grow, learn, and develop a success model every time. Not every effort is either a complete success or failure, as there can be mixed results, from which we can apply your 6 questions to be asked.

  2. March 21st, 2011 at 7:27 am
    ME Liz Strauss said

    Hi Chris,
    Exactly! We need to debrief every project so that we own what we’ve learned. :)

  3. March 21st, 2011 at 9:42 am
    Jeannie Walters said

    Liz – I love this reminder because I am pretty rigid about dissecting my failures 18 different ways. I’m not very good at the same thing for successes. Good way to put parameters around how to do this in a way that doesn’t just skim over the good stuff!

  4. March 21st, 2011 at 10:55 am
    ME Liz Strauss said

    Hi Jeannie!
    Delighted you found value in it. I do this to keep me up on my game. I sure helps me remember I’m constantly learning and growing in what I know.

  5. March 21st, 2011 at 11:00 am
    Andy @ FirstFound said

    Good points. But it’s so much easier to learn from failure!

  6. March 21st, 2011 at 4:21 pm
    Erica Ross-Krieger said

    Liz – This was the perfect piece for me to read today. I love the two lines “When you own your success, it shows every time you walk into a room. That’s how claiming rewards from success leverages itself into more success.” That really made me see that the opposite is true also – when I am only focused on dissecting my failures, that shows when I walk into a room too…and then that state leverages itself into more self-beatup which leads to other failures. yikes. not a pretty picture. I will take this on as a challenge today and really look deeply (and joyfully) at what I can learn from “what’s gone well.” Mega-thanks!

  7. March 22nd, 2011 at 4:29 am
    eating etiquette said

    Nice post…I liked it…The way the things are explained here step-by-step,is the best part of the post….Yeah its true that one can learn many things from his failures…

  8. March 22nd, 2011 at 7:00 am
    ME Liz Strauss said

    It only seems easier to learn from failure because we’ve got so much practice at doing that. The model is the same all we have to do with a success is stop and ask ourselves the same questions about the win as we do about the loss. :)

  9. March 22nd, 2011 at 7:01 am
    ME Liz Strauss said

    How perceptive of you to home in on the exact reason I wrote this and bring it together in such a fine way. Yep, I see plenty of us walking into the room as the people we used to be or the people who own our mistakes. I’ve decided that being one of those people doesn’t work for me. :)

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