February 02, 2023 | 5 min read
Made A Mistake At Work? 4 Ways To Fix It


While we aspire for perfection in our career, hiccups along the way are inevitable. It’s how you face those situations head-on and recover from them that truly shows your integrity and commitment to your position. So, if a situation doesn’t go as planned or you made a mistake at work, don’t fret. Take these four things into consideration when you need to fix something at work.

Address the issue immediately

First and foremost – if the issue isn’t too serious, fix it immediately. Speaking to your supervisor about the situation is a given, but if a swift response is possible to correct the situation without their direct involvement, go for it. If it’s something you can’t personally fix alone or need a higher authority to be involved in, then expedite the entire process by going to them immediately. The longer the matter in question isn’t properly addressed, the bigger the dilemma.

Acknowledge it and apologize

If you made a mistake at work, accountability is key. Diverting blame or making excuses could even land you in hotter water than the original mistake. Acknowledging your error, apologizing, and taking responsibility will not only help you show remorse for your mistake, but also display maturity and professionalism. Meet with your supervisor to thoroughly explain the situation and how it happened and, if needed, talk to your coworkers who might’ve been affected by the situation as well. You don’t want to make a scene and be dramatic, but also acting too nonchalant about the situation could be detrimental to how your work ethic is perceived. Acknowledge it and apologize.

Adjust and adapt

Avoiding the same mistake should be a high priority moving forward. To ensure this, retrace your steps to understand how everything went down and how your actions contributed to the issue. Ask yourself: do you have any bad working habits that may have impacted the outcome? If so, try to identify these behaviors and adjust accordingly. For example, you can try to retrain yourself with certain practices or even ask coworkers for their help and advice. Switching up your working style or your job processes can give you a fresh, new outlook on how to approach your day-to-day responsibilities.

Go the extra mile / make up for it

Currying favor with your supervisor and colleagues can help you move on if you made a mistake at work. Doing simple things like working harder and staying longer to make up for your gaffe can go a long way. Taking a step further and offering to take on some more responsibilities is a great display of remorse and relentless determination to succeed in your role that won’t go unnoticed. But ultimately the best thing to do is to move on. Once you’ve fixed the dilemma, made amends, and instilled the proper precaution to make sure this situation is avoidable, leave it all in the past. Letting it hang over your head like a dark cloud will only be detrimental to your psyche, cause you to second guess yourself, and lead you to make other mistakes.

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