Error culture in companies: advantages for companies

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Text comes from: Die Macht der versteckten Signale: Wortwahl - Körpersprache - Emotionen. Nonverbale Widerstände erkennen und überwinden (2014) of Dr. Gabriele Cerwinka, Gabriele Schranz, published by Linde Verlag, Reprints by friendly permission of the publisher.
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Error management is, as already described, the solution-oriented control of all activities in dealing with errors, while error culture refers to the way in which errors occur Company deals with mistakes. And this culture of error means more than just a little more indulgence with human imperfection!


Here writes for you:


Dr. Gabriele Cerwinka cerwinkaDr. Gabriele Cerwinka is a shareholder of Schranz and Cerwinka OEG.


From the author:




Here writes for you:


Gabriele Schranz SchranzGabriele Schranz is a shareholder of Schranz and Cerwinka OEG; Vienna - Zurich.


Characteristic for enterprise culture

An error culture shapes the entire corporate culture. Which advantages are it exactly, the one Company from a positive culture of error can lukrieren? Dynamic improvement instead of static troubleshooting: In many companies, there is still static thinking when it comes to mistakes.

The company management thinks and acts “ballistically”: like a cannonball, after firing it can no longer be influenced. If in the end an error occurs because the cannon was misaligned, it cannot be changed, the damage has occurred!

Avoid error retries

The aim of every error culture should be to avoid repetition of errors. Anyone who fails to make mistakes in a timely manner and analyzes them will run the risk of permitting the same error - with all the negative consequences for the company.

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Mistakes can not be avoided altogether, but a conscious mistake culture creates appropriate preventive measures, in order to prevent a mistake several times.

Fault culture also means knowing and consciously using the individual learning behavior of employees. Everyone learns from mistakes, and this behavior is promoted by a positive error culture.

Promote problem solving skills

Employees also consciously develop their own problem-solving skills. Hand-in-hand, this also means a valuable feedback culture, which is the focus of this individual learning process.

Permanent Self-Reflection: An open fault culture forces a company to constantly question what and where it can improve.

Opportunities in time

The cannon is re-aligned for the next shot. The damage is only corrected afterwards. This leads to great losses and missed opportunities.

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A good error culture, on the other hand, detects errors during the process and corrects them continuously. This results in a dynamic process of change and learning, wherever the latest findings on errors are incorporated.

Errors are used for education and training

Permanent change and fluid change are the result. Errors serve directly the internal training and further education.

In addition, a company can save considerable costs: Whoever only fixes the damage afterwards, when the “missed shot in the wrong place”, must expect considerable costs.

Troubleshooting starts too late

This realization has led to early deliberations of error avoidance, especially in mass production. Unfortunately, these measures are often too late, and only when the damage has already occurred.

The cost of troubleshooting skyrockets the later the error is discovered in the production chain. The most expensive issue is troubleshooting if the product has already left the company and the claim is made.

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Use errors rather than avoid

A return operation in the automotive sector is disproportionately expensive, including image and trust damage. Apart from this, this error avoidance strategy neglects an enormously important aspect: the fact that errors can not be avoided!

So it is better, and therefore much cheaper, to use these mistakes to continually adapt and improve products or services. This way, companies can also deduce the inevitable from a positive and cost-reducing factor!

Respond to sub-waiting

Companies can also respond to the unprepared: A suitable fault culture is also prepared by a company in situations where an unexpected and often unforeseeable crisis suddenly arises.

Absolute flawlessness is particularly expected from “high responsibility organizations” such as hospitals, airlines or nuclear power plants. Nevertheless, mistakes will happen again and again and despite the greatest avoidance efforts.

Professional crisis management

So what can these companies do? A suitable fault culture teaches these companies to react even to the slightest warning. It also teaches these companies how to deal with actual damage. How this damage and its effects are kept as low as possible and how they are communicated both internally and externally.

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Fast and standardized action is required here. A good culture of error is also the prerequisite for a professional crisis management.

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