I have always been fascinated by the way an organization describes a mistake. Some come right out and say, “Yes, we messed up and we accept responsibility for what happened.” Others play the blame game and try to pass off their mistakes on others. Regardless of where the blame is placed, the one thing that strikes me as interesting is how an organization puts the opportunity spin on it.
The opportunity spin is something that challenges us to think about issues in a different light. Mistakes are made and how we react to them can determine how we appear to the rest of the world. What do you think about an organization that states an issue is a great opportunity to learn and make changes? Sounds much better than telling the public that they screwed up and don’t have a clue what should be done next.
In addition to changing the way the public views your organization, turning a disaster into an opportunity will also put a different spin on a situation for your team. When everyone is running around wringing his or her hands in despair because they messed up, this creates chaos and doesn’t do much to address an issue. Something as simple as a word choice of “opportunity” can take a little of the fear out of a situation and drive everyone toward a positive result.
Do you see a disaster as an opportunity for future success or just a disaster?