Yesterday I had to do my first Facebook Live for Portsmouth Cathedral – I was leading a service of Evening Prayer from home. This is part of my curacy now that I am licensed to work at the cathedral. And it went majorly wrong!
Firstly, despite practising beforehand, I discovered afterwards that I did not get the phone into the correct orientation so my image ended up at a 90 degree angle and people had to turn their phones to see me properly. And then, three-quarters of the way through my phone cut out altogether and I looked up to find myself talking to a blank screen!
I felt mortified, but also at the mercy of technology gremlins beyond my control.
What was interesting to me was that I immediately received messages from my ‘manager’ about not worrying at all about the problems; it was all par for the course and happened to everyone. I sent out a note of apology to my clergy colleagues, who all came back with messages of encouragement.
And I reflected on how that made me feel. Firstly, I felt the power of their forgiveness and acceptance. I also felt closer to my new colleagues because of this experience. It served to build relationship. And whereas in the past, I might have beaten myself up over something like that, I accepted it and moved on, resolved to sort out these issues before the next time.
Granted, this was not a business setting where the customer was paying for something, but still the loving kindness of my colleagues stood out for me, and made me reflect on how easy it is to respond with a critical eye rather than a compassionate one.
When things go wrong, we always have choices about how we respond that can make the difference between someone feeling like giving up on the one hand and trying a second time on the other.
How do you respond when one of your team messes up?
How could you be giving the right amount of encouragement and challenge to them to get it right next time?
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