How often do you discuss an important matter and you finding the discussion to automatically “blame” it on someone else? Or at least blame it on the company, customers, circumstances etc. My favorite is the never-ending blame on central marketing. I was probably the best in this blame game in our company.
Play a quick mind game, what if you are the CEO!?
Play a quick mind game! Imagine you are the CEO or owner of the company you work for. If you had everything you needed how would you solve your problem?
In my case, I suddenly discovered that I could do just about anything. Don’t misunderstand me, I live in the real life with limited power and sometimes not even that. My shear energy, fire and willingness affect the people around me to achieve things they normally would never do for me or even themselves. This is so empowering that I have achieved impressing results. I will give you number of examples rather than try to “teach” it.
How many meetings have you had where everyone from the top manager to the sales guys find a way of deflecting the question from themselves. A normal discussion would be; – The reason we don’t have the material we need is because the marketing doesn’t understand the customer needs. Or another favorite is; – Well, it is their incompetents that have put us in this situation. You probably have more and better examples…
You have the boss you deserve!
The point is that some people are so good at deflecting responsibility that you don’t even notice it being done. The higher up you go the better it gets. After reading couple of books (see references below); I came to the insight that whatever happens in your private and professional life, you are the one responsible. Once you have come to grasp of this insight you will discover that you can affect so many things. You feel being in charge and resourceful. Because, there is no one to shift responsibility to. If you want something done, you have to take charge and get it done. This is also true for if you tolerate people shifting responsibility you deserve being in that situation. You have to help people around you to take responsibility as well.
Taking responsibility is like opening a door.
Taking responsibility is like opening a door, you suddenly realize that there is a whole new world that you haven’t seen. I know it sounds funny, but that is the effect it had on me. Taking responsibility, “forcing” people to take responsibility has changed the effectiveness in my organization. We still struggle, because not everyone is committed. The other side of taking responsibility is that you have to deliver. Which also means that you have get your hands dirty.
But, boy, does it feel good to stand up and present a solution that normally would be 30 min. of blaming others and patting backs of other blamers. Now, no one leaves the meeting without taking responsibility. At least not my meetings.