Great companies are not built on stagnancy. They require people to grow and develop new skills and abilities. However, if we want people to improve themselves, we must be okay with them being terrible first.
As the saying goes, “Be bad until you’re good and good until you’re great.” To get to great, you must start with bad.
We need to set up workplace cultures that allow people to fail (possibly many times) so they can learn and practice important skills.
This means patience and understanding on both sides. As learners, we must allow ourselves to be vulnerable and let people know we are learning and will be messing up occasionally. We need to be okay with the potential damage to our egos when we bomb.
On the other side, we must be willing to let people slip-up without harsh judgements and negative repercussions. It is imperative that we give others – employees, peers and leaders – permission to suck.
If you’re going to be great, you’re going to have to start at the bottom. The only other option is mediocrity.