Usually, when one make a mistake at work, the first thing s/he thinks about is how s/he can hide this from his/her manager. right?
From my humble experience, I usually think about it differently: How can I tell my manager about this. Strange?
Not really, telling your manager about your mistakes is the best thing one usually do. I believe it helps built a healthy relation with your manager. In addition to that it.If you don’t tell your story:
- You’re not sure how it will be told! usually a lot of scope creep will sneak in!
- Your credibility will be affected. Your manager will start questioning: there should be other things that went wrong and nobody told me about? what else he could be hiding. On the other hand, even if your manage might look disappointed with the mistake, on the long run it will increase your credibility and increase his trust in you.
- Severity of issues usually increases with time. The cost of fixing them increases, and sometimes exponentially.
Mistakes usually happens, no manager on earth expect zero mistakes from his report.
Finally make sure that you rephrase it right, and to highlight only mistakes that you believe your manager would like to know about. What I am referring are mistakes that might affect the business and your are not able to recover within your scope. “Don’t try to hide an elephant” as per Jeffrey J. Fox stated in “How to become CEO”. Make sure to show a real interest in learning from your manager how could this be avoided in the problem.
Accept your mistakes, publicize them right, learn from it and enjoy progressing in your career.