True Cost of Mistakes

It is human nature to avoid acknowledging mistakes. Some of us are more susceptible to this than others, some of us are more aware of this fact than others. When we err, we try to save face, and often this translates into dragging out a mistake longer than may be necessary, thereby exacerbating the costs associated with the mistake.

Rarely does one face a problem that is truly unique. What is usually unique is the particular grouping of problems faced by a particular individual.

As an example, in website development, there are many approaches to any single problem. It is the rare case that a single requirement can or should only be met by a single potential solution. As a result, 5 businesses trying to solve the same need will likely end up with 5 very different websites. That being said, however, there are certainly some very wrong solutions to those same problems.

It is not uncommon to see a business approaching their problem as though it were truly unique. This is a very rare situation, and the mentality of being unique can lead a business to pursue a faulty line of development, culminating in a solution that is neither effective at solving the problem, nor as cost-effective as a more standard solution.

However, it is not uncommon to see such behavior, of a business insisting they know better, or that their situation is special and the standard solutions do not apply to them. They continue to sink large amounts of time, effort, and money into the sinking ship, without considering the true costs.

It is better to be aware in the middle of a project that you are heading in the wrong direction, then it is to bury your head in the sand. Sometimes, the true cost of admitting a mistake is that you learn from the experience, or you do a better job the next time around.

Are you afraid to own up to mistakes you might have made? What strategies have you adopted to help ensure that you don’t exert more energy, time, or money into a path you’ve come to realize is not the best one for your needs?