I have been asked a few times about Bulldog Rule #15 and I want to take some time to explain it. Most people think that being right is the only way to get ahead and build a strong business. This rule does not mean that bringing the right ingredients and service to the marketplace can somehow be cut back and you can still be profitable in the long run. There is never a reason or need to cut back on providing the best you can bring to your customers. That is not an issue of right or wrong, but rather of being a smart business owner.
Being “right” all the time means being the only one with the answers and not listening to the people around you who have great ideas to offer. It means that you are inflexible and unable to handle the fact that you are sometimes wrong.
Does this sound like someone you know?
I have learned over the years that some of the best ideas to grow a company come from the front line employees. These are the lowest paid employees, but also have more face to face contact with customers than anyone else in the organization. You may be the one who steers the ship, but they are the ones making it move. By listening to them and that they can be right about the direction of the company you are growing not only the success of the business, but also the culture of your organization.
Bulldog Rule #15 is also about admitting when you are wrong. How often do we look at things from a right or wrong perspective and miss the fact that the boss is human and can make errors. By being a true leader you have the opportunity to let your employees know that making mistakes is a path to finding great ways to do things better.
Be right when you need to. Let others be right when you can. In the big picture, focus on the goal of your business and not so much on being perfect.