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A ‘leading loser’ shares what he learned the hard way—so you won’t have to.
We all make mistakes. I try to learn from mine and, on occasion, I’ve even been known to share the lessons with others. But acknowledging my blunders to a few close confidantes is not the same as disclosing them to several hundred thousand HR professionals.
So imagine my ambivalence when HR Magazine approached me with the idea of describing my greatest mistakes leading the build-out of a talent analytics initiative at ConAgra Foods, a Fortune 200 company. I was mortified … and, at the same time, intrigued.
Anyone who knows me is aware that I hate to lose. But I have to admit it: In 2014, the same year I received several national commendations for my work in talent analytics, I was also (in my estimation) one of the “leading losers” in the field. That’s because I failed to ensure that my vision, strategies and initiatives were aligned with those of my organization.
Where, specifically, did I miss the mark? In reflecting on that, I categorized my pitfalls as seven key actions. So, if you also want to be a loser—or to avoid being one—consider the following recipe for failure.
Mark Berry is vice president of human resources at CGB Enterprises Inc. in Covington, La. He is former vice president of people insights at ConAgra Foods.
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