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When things go wrong, don't lose the lesson. Especially if it involves Seth Godin.

In Touch - Newsletter - #40

Welcome to the fortieth edition of "In Touch". As always, I would love to continue the conversation so please hit "reply" and let me know what you think.

Story of the Week: When things go wrong, don't lose the lesson. Especially if it involves Seth Godin.

Twice a week I make time to meet up with my friend Savvas Trichas. Our meetings are a real blessing. We abstain from discussing people or behaviours and jump straight into the ideas lane. I admit that I attribute part of my professional and personal success to these meetings. During a recent get-together, I told Savvas about an incident involving myself and one of my heroes, the great Seth Godin, probably the best marketeer of the 21st century and author of over 23 books, with whom I am delighted and honoured to be in personal contact.

One day, I felt so pleased about our email conversation, that I shared it (as blind copy – bcc) with two friends. One of them decided to comment on it and by mistake pressed ‘reply all’. His message was also sent to Seth Godin. It was not a terrible mistake, but I felt bad, thinking that Seth might perceive me as sharing our personal email exchanges.

Savvas smiled and said, ''So, Michael, what's the lesson here?'' and before I could answer, he showed me a passage from Robin Sharma’s book “Family Wisdom from the Monk Who Sold His Ferrari” in which the author describes the secret of someone’s self-confidence:

“He was raised by his father, and whenever he would spill a drink or break a dish or make a mistake, his father, rather than getting angry, would ask him: ‘So, Jerry, what’s the lesson here?’ That simple question led to the forging of one of the strongest characters I’ve ever known.”

Well, the lesson was obvious: For me, it was to think twice before sharing anything. For my friend, it was to pause for a second and ensure that he replies to the correct person.

That day, I was reminded of the Dalai Lama’s celebrated saying: “When you lose, don’t lose the lesson”. And, of course, he was right. When things go wrong, we can always learn something from the situation that will help us in the future. 

Words of Wisdom

On mistakes and lessons:

"A smart man makes a mistake, learns from it, and never makes that mistake again."

Roy H. Williams (1958-), U.S. author and marketing expert

A Question to Ponder, dear friend.

"Can you recall the lesson that you have taken from the last mistake you have made?"

Hit reply and let me know.

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