When you’re in business things will go wrong.
If you’re a manager or someone with responsibility it’s the nature of things.
You’re always working on fixing problems. At least that’s what the good managers do. The bad ones are the ones that focus on the blame. They’re usually looking to push the blame on someone else. They feel vulnerable for some reason and because of that they’re afraid of being wrong.
It can even happen with little things.
I received an invite for a conference call last week. The person sent over their number in the invite and at the time I called the number and the person wasn’t there. I left a message and then sent an email.
No worries. Let’s set up another time.
The response I got said they didn’t know about the call because they hadn’t received the information on their side of things. It must be something on my side of things.
Now, it certainly could have been. I checked around. I don’t want that to happen in the future.
But then I realized that we never got around to setting up another call for at least a few weeks. Just wasting time worry about the blame and not just moving on and having our conversation.
Sometimes it’s not about excuses and passing blame to another person.
The classic one is that the dog ate your homework. Something happened to you that held you back from something. Maybe a call. Maybe a deadline with a project.
Whatever it was the people you let down probably don’t really care. They’re almost always wondering how you’re going to figure it out on your own and not do it again in the future.
They just don’t care about the why. So don’t waste their time with excuses.
Whatever it was happened. You figure it out and learn from it.
Never Being Wrong
And it’s not just business. Some people just seem obsessed with never being wrong. If something happens they spend all their energy just figuring out how it was not their fault.
Maybe it’s just something that drives me crazy. I think it’s just a waste of energy.
I’m happy to take the blame for things. A writer on the team is late with a post. I’ll take the blame and cover for the writer. Let’s move on and figure out how to move forward as fast as we can. Why waste energy on something that won’t benefit either of the parties?
As the person in charge I think you have to view everything as your fault. This puts you in a problem solving mode. And that’s what responsibility is. It’s about taking problems and fixing them.
Maybe blaming others is really just a form of procrastination. Or maybe it’s just getting back to the idea of some kind of insecurity within yourself. Feeling shamed by making a mistake or something like that. I don’t know, but the final point of the article is that if you find yourself always looking for a reason that it’s not your fault that you’re giving up energy to something that doesn’t matter. You’re holding yourself back from success.