“Failure to learn from the mistakes of others”

“Whether we like to admit it or not, mistakes occur on a fairly regular basis.  If we’re lucky, the mistake causes embarrassment and creates a humorous story.  If we’re unlucky, the consequences can be severe or tragic or both.” -Steven “Randy” Watt

If you’ve attended one of my Canine Liability 360 classes, you know that “failure to learn from the mistakes of others” is the number one reason I identify as to why persons affiliated with a K9 program get in trouble.  When we fail to learn from others when they are making or have made mistakes, we are destined to make the same mistakes ourselves.

Unfortunately, we don’t do a good job sharing our mistakes.  So, we must take full advantage when possible.  A solid practice requiring a debriefing following training and K9 incidents or involvement will assist to identify problems as well as successes.  And, whenever possible, share your mistakes with others so they can learn also.

“Successful or not, every tactical [K9] operation yields fruit in the form of lessons learned.” -Charles “Sid” Heal

A debrief following training, a deployment or a high risk patrol encounter is essential and should be mandatory because it serves as an invaluable source in determining lessons learned from an incident so that good performance continues, satisfactory performance improves, and poor performance is not replicated.

“You have to learn from the mistakes of others. You won’t live long enough to make them all yourself.” -Hyman G. Rickover

Take care, be safe and learn from the mistakes of others….

Bill Lewis II

This “reason” was originally shared on September 17, 2013.

“Trouble” isn’t always related to incidents or predicaments that directly result in lawsuits, claims or discipline. Often times, our actions or inactions that are missed, deliberately overlooked or downplayed may lead to nothing or can later lead to mistakes or bad incidents with minimal to serious repercussions.  A reason we get in trouble can be minor or simple at first glance – or even serious – but a combination of these factors can often have disastrous consequences.   

These “reasons” are provided periodically as a collection in-progress based on actual incidents and real attitudes as well as feedback received at HITS, the CNCA Training Institute, and the “Canine Liability 360” classes.  As Gordon Graham says, “We haven’t found new ways to get in trouble.” So, as the list progresses, you may or may not read something familiar to you that you have personally experienced or seen others encounter. If you encountered or heard about it, did you learn from it?