6 Ways To Make The Most Of Your Mistakes

learn from mistakes

All real estate investors make mistakes. In fact if you have not made a mistake you probably aren’t as involved in the business as you need to be.  One of the biggest fears for new and old investors alike is the fear of failure.  In some cases this fear paralyzes them to the point where they stop taking action.  This is the worst thing you can do.  Instead of letting fear of mistakes rule your business you should view them as a positive.  Of course, no investor wants to make mistakes but they happen.  When they do there are a few things you can do to turn them into a learning experience.  Here are six ways you can make the most of your mistakes.

  • Don’t Run From Them. There is an old political expression that the cover up is always worse than the crime. The same concept can be brought to your real estate business. While your mistakes are hopefully not criminal you also shouldn’t make them any worse than they have to be. As difficult as it may be as soon as you recognize a mistake you need to get out in front of it. Instead of waiting to call a business partner or someone involved in the deal you should call them first. The longer you let a mistake go unresolved the worse it becomes. Dealing with mistakes is similar to pulling off a scab. It will sting like crazy when you are doing it but once it’s over it feels better. The people around you may be initially disappointed but in time they will appreciate and respect the fact that you reached out to them. Instead of remembering the mistake they will remember how you dealt with it.
  • No Excuses. If you made the mistake you need to own it. Even if other people didn’t pull their weight you can’t throw everyone under the bus. It is either your fault or it isn’t. As you try to explain your mistake you need to fight the urge to make excuses and blame other people. By accepting blame you come across much better than if you pointed fingers and searched for excuses. Smart people in the real estate business know who is to blame and what caused the problem. You don’t need to tell them that the attorney dragged their feet for a few days or bank didn’t return your calls. They either know or will figure this out on their own. If, and when, they do they will respect the fact that you didn’t make excuses. Nobody wants to hear a halfhearted explanation filled with excuses. If you made a mistake you need to take full responsibility.
  • Solution. Now that you made a mistake how are you going to go about fixing it? Even if you cannot save a current deal you should take the time to find a solution moving forward. The odds are that in some point in the future you will face a similar problem. If the mistake happens in real time you can save face by offering up solutions to the issue. When most investors make a mistake they put their heads in the sand and say nothing. Flip this mindset around and keep your head held high. Finding a solution to a problem can help save the day and let any mistake you make seem like ancient history.
  • Learn From It. Everyone knows the importance of not making the same mistake twice. At some point after a mistake is made you need to take a step back and break it down. Look at the cause and what you could have done to prevent it. Trace the steps that led you to that point and if there was any other way you could have got there. Everyone in the real estate business has made a mistake at some point in their career. In fact some can argue that making mistakes is the best form of education. Instead of blowing them off and quickly moving on you should take the time to learn from them.
  • Rebound. Nobody likes to feel that they made a mistake that let themselves or their team down. When it happens it is almost a natural reaction to sulk and become timid. You are not judged on your mistakes but how quickly you can rebound from them. Good real estate investors have a similar mindset of an NFL quarterback. They know they are not going to complete every pass and there will be interceptions along the way but they keep throwing. You can’t let one mistake define your career. The quicker you get right back on the horse the better you and your business will be.
  • Positive Mindset. As you rebound it is important that you maintain a positive mindset. Whatever your mistake was and how it may have impacted your business you can’t let it bring you down. Nobody wants to work with people who are constantly negative. They don’t want to hear all the bad things that happened on a previous deal. It is important that you have a short memory when it comes to your mistakes. Accept that they happened, figure out the cause and make sure they never happen again.

The real estate business is filled with ups and downs. There will be mistakes along the way.  Don’t let one mistake define you or your business.