Whose Mistakes do you Learn from?

“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
George Santayana


I was having a conversation with a friend this week about some stuff that was happening in his workplace. I was sensing his frustration with what was happening. It was like he knew what was happening, what is going to happen and what the end result would be. Where it was going was not good. It was not going to turn out the way everyone was hoping.

The second part of the frustration was that he knew how to fix the situation. The fix was relatively easy and the fix would avoid the upcoming issues and have great outcomes for all concerned. So how did he know this? Firstly, he had previously been involved in a process very similar and knew from experience the best way forward. And second there was Policy and Procedures that outlined the best process based on previous experiences.


  • Have you ever been in a similar situation?
  • Have you been frustrated by watching an avoidable situation develop?
  • Have you known the best way forward, but decision makers would not listen?


So why do decision makers sometimes make the same mistakes as those in the past? Sometimes it is because they do not know of past experiences, sometimes it is an ego thing, sometimes it is because they honestly believe there is going to be a different result this time and sometimes it is because they are so focused on the current situation that they have not reviewed the past.

I heard a saying many years ago that failure and mistakes are the best teachers in life. Generally when things are going well we do not learn as much as when things go wrong. However the wise person sharing this advice with me went on to ask “Do you learn from your mistakes or from someone else’s?”. He explained how learning from someone else’s mistakes, in the past, was the quickest and least painful. I must admit I am hard headed at times….. But I am striving to learn from other people’s mistakes.


  • Are you hard headed and learn mainly from your own mistakes?
  • Do you rush into things and not allow the time to review what has happened in the past?
  • Or do you review the past and talk to others to learn from their experiences and mistakes?



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About Attila Ovari

Attila Ovari is an Entrepreneur that loves life and is passionate about adventure. Attila Ovari writes, speaks and coaches to inspire others to better themselves through following their passions and chasing their dreams. He has developed his passions of inspiration, leadership and strategy into strengths through his businesses and community pursuits.

Posted on Saturday, 18 Jul 2015, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Whose Mistakes do you Learn from?.

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