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Work mistakes we can all learn from

Oopsie daisy

Hi friends! It’s recently been brought to my attention that experts suggest having a “lazy day” once in a while can benefit your health. If it’s good enough for Taylor Swift (HBD!), it’s good enough for me.

Today’s tunes: Don’t worry, we only have two more weeks of holiday music until I’m back on my millennial pop BS. But until then, I’ll be blaring Faith Hill’s “Where Are You Christmas?” on repeat while I light 10 pine-scented candles around my house. 


The Work Mistakes We’ve Learned the Most From

As the great Kelly Clarkson once sang, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” None of us are perfect (except for Kelly), and we’re all bound to make mistakes from time to time.

But are you going to let that mistake define you for the rest of your career? Or will you throw on the Legally Blonde montage after Elle Woods wears the bunny costume to the definitely-not-a-costume party and get your rear in gear?

We’re big fans of the latter: As embarrassing as they might be, our slip-ups can actually help us learn and grow in our careers.

So in the spirit of doing just that, the WorkDaze crew (and some of you!) are sharing more about the oopsies that have taught us to be better at our jobs. Hope you can learn from them, too! 


If you’ve been with us from the very beginning, 1) you’re a real one and 2) you might remember our very first email had a little oops. I pressed send on our very first edition of WorkDaze before remembering to delete “[TEST 2]” from the email subject line. I was mortified, and I thought for sure that was the last time I’d be sending a WorkDaze email. 

Lesson learned: Slow down. It’s hard to take a beat when life seems like it’s moving a mile a minute, but pausing and checking off a list before pressing send has become a part of my routine. And I’m happy to report that a subject line snafu hasn’t been made since. Knock on wood. 


I forgot to record a webinar for a client that was absolutely supposed to be recorded. My life flashed before my eyes when I realized more than halfway through that I hadn’t hit record. I took full responsibility and immediately went to my manager (hey Jenny!) and let her know. She was super chill about it, and the client ended up never asking for the recording anyway. 

Lesson learned: Be honest and admit when you make a mistake. Most of the time it’s a lot bigger issue in your head than it is IRL. 


At an old job, Cameron Diaz came in for an interview and it was a big deal for us! Part of my role was managing the interns and making sure they didn’t take photos of her. While they were more than well-behaved, another coworker and I thought we’d get away with snapping a quick photo from the back of the room.

Just as I took the pic, the Cameron Diaz stops the interview, points to us, and says, “Ladybugs in the back over there, could you not take any photos right now? I don’t know how flattering that angle is.” The entire room turned around and stared at us. Of course Cameron continued the interview like a pro.

Lesson learned: Practice what you preach and set a good example if you’re in charge. To this day I can’t see anything with Cameron Diaz (or ladybugs, for that matter) without cringing. A truly humbling experience. 🥴


Once upon a time in a corporate world far away from the cool stuff I do with WorkDaze now, I worked at a media company that participated in the time-honored tradition of paying entry-level journalists next to nothing. In my final interview, my soon-to-be manager asked me what I planned to do to “supplement my income” since the job he was hiring me for was paying so little and required me to live in NYC. I missed that ginormous red flag and ended up barely scraping by my first year in New York…and making way less than I could have had I simply said “I’d like to talk about compensation.” Oh, and I said I’d babysit to make ends meet. WTF?

Lesson learned: The biggest room is for improvement, but the second biggest room is for negotiation. It was my first big job, and I was afraid that negotiating would suggest I was ungrateful for the opportunity. But now I know—negotiating is just doing the footwork to get paid what you’re worth. And if a company expects you to work full-time? They better pay like it. You’re interviewing them just as much as they’re interviewing you.

And because misery loves company, here are some horror stories (with lessons!) you shared with us:


When I was applying to my first job, I lied on my résumé about having a pretty advanced skill. The joke was on me though, because I ended up having to use the skill often…and eventually had to confess to my manager.

Lesson learned: There’s a difference between saying you’re an expert in Excel when you’re really just proficient and flat-out lying on your résumé. I won’t lie like that again about my skillset. It wasn’t worth the stress, the learning curve, or the embarrassment of admitting my mistake. 


I once sent a new product launch email that had a typo in the product name! We ended up sending a funny “Whoops! Our bad!” email…and we didn’t have one single complaint.

Lesson(s) learned: 1) More often than not, these mistakes and issues we think are literally the end of the world are not nearly as big as we think. 2) Always have someone else proofread the important stuff. That way, if there’s an issue, you won’t be the only one to blame! :)


A friend accidentally sent a message to our manager instead of me, calling him a “pompous pr*ck.” 

Lesson learned: Never talk sh*t in a work chat. Like ever. 

Things To Send Your Work Besties

…before you bake fresh chocolate chip cookies at 9am. ‘Tis the season.

A word to the wise: Avoid drinking Panera’s Charged Lemonade. Two lawsuits have been filed against the chain claiming its drinks were improperly labeled after two customers who drank them died of cardiac arrest. Compared to other energy drinks that have about 260 mg of caffeine, a large Charged Lemonade contains 390 mg.

If you have no idea what to get your cousin for your family’s annual Secret Santa, we got you! The 2023 WorkDaze Holiday Gift Guide has some of our faves, plus some things we hope our Secret Santas get us! 

My life was forever changed when I saw this no-peel mashed potato hack. The literal definition of work smarter, not harder.

That’s all for today! Thanks so much for reading. Hope something good happens to you this week! Catch ya next Wednesday for our final WorkDaze of the year <3. 



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