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CYA: Does It Pay?

You’ve probably encountered people who never take responsibility for ANYTHING. That’s what sparked today’s blog –

Does it pay to shift the blame?

On the show, Mary-Lynn said that she believes it DOES pay.

She said she is not a blame-shifter herself, but she has worked with them. In her experience, they often get away with it. Sometimes they even get rewarded with promotions or a better job!

George retorted that it may work short-term, but it DOES NOT pay in the long run. He talked about a manager he had who never accepted responsibility. He knew that meant one of two things – either she wasn’t doing anything, or she was passing the buck. So he fired her.

It hurts morale when employees see people getting away with not accepting responsibility. George said he learned this lesson the hard way – after firing an employee, another employee asked why it took him so long!

As an employee, you don’t have many options when you’re working with a blame-shifter. However, there is one thing you can do – document, document, document. You don’t want to get blamed for THEIR mistakes.

However, as a leader, you can create a culture where it’s okay to accept blame. That’s important because your employees are often afraid of the consequences of owning up to their mistakes.

So focus on fixing the problem, not the blame.

To rephrase an old saying, “It’s amazing how much gets accomplished when no one cares who gets the blame.”

In our society today, we seem to do the opposite – we rush to find SOMEBODY to blame, rather than fixing the problem. Mary-Lynn said that’s why it pays to be a blame-shifter.

George said he remembered an employee who always blamed something or someone. George told him that he had a lot of potential. He wouldn’t get fired for making a mistake, but he was going to get fired if he didn’t start taking responsibility.

He became one of George’s top managers. That won’t work with all employees, but it will work with the ones you want to keep.

Admit your mistakes
Lead by example – when your employees see you admitting mistakes, they’ll feel safe doing the same.

Distribute the credit liberally and focus the blame conservatively. Give more credit to your team; accept more blame yourself. You’ll win the hearts and minds of your team when you do this.

How to get away with shifting the blame
George said that there was one way you might get away with always shifting the blame.

Be a moving target.

If you’re constantly moving from job to job, company to company, place to place, you might get away with it in the long run. But do you really want to live that life – always looking over your shoulder, always worrying that you’ll be found out?

Mary-Lynn responded that blame-shifters do move – and it’s usually UP – to a better job!

What do you think? Does CYA pay?

Our bigg quote today is by the great writer, Oscar Wilde.

“It’s not whether you win or lose; it’s how you place the blame.”

 
In the game of life, great teams experience the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat together, not as individuals.

Next time, we’ll discuss what you can learn from jugglers. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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The Single Most Destructive Thought You Can Have

Here we are – the holidays are over and we’re back to work. We’re ripe with enthusiasm as we consider the possibilities for the New Year. With that in mind, we want to talk about the single most destructive thought you can have.

Think of people you know who have one or more of the following traits:

  • Need constant recognition.
  • Often angry, or depressed.
  • Complain about how unfair life is.
  • Scared to take any risk, or sometimes even make a decision.
  • Unsuccessful time after time, attempt after attempt, job after job.
  • Unable to trust. They have few friends.
  • They’re emotionally unhealthy, and that is even leading to physical ailments.
  • Addicted to one or more of the following: alcohol, drugs, gambling, etc.

Why do people exhibit such behaviors? It’s often because of how they think. If you find yourself exhibiting one of these traits, you, too, may have fallen prey to the single most destructive thought you can have …

You think you’re not solely in control of your life.

Not accepting that you are in full control of your life is the easy way out. When life treats you badly, blame it on circumstances. Your parents. Your spouse. Your kids. Your boss. Anything or anyone, other than you! It’s much easier to blame outside forces than to accept responsibility yourself.

But some people look at this responsibility as a burden. It’s not a burden – it’s a blessing. It means you are free to create your dream life. It’s empowering!

Responsible means “response-able.”
You may be saying, “That all sounds great, but you’re kidding yourself if you think you can control everything.”

We’re NOT saying “you control everything.” We ARE saying you control your life. There is a difference.

Obviously, you can’t control everything that happens to you. But you can control how you respond. Steven Covey calls this “response-able” in his great book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.

Thinking freed him from captivity
Victor Frankl, in his great book, Man’s Search for Meaning, tells his inspiring story as a prisoner in the concentration camps of World War II. He seemingly lost everything – his family, his friends, his clothes, his dignity. However, there was one thing nobody could take away from him … his thoughts.

Sometimes, he chose to escape his circumstances and envision himself far, far away. He chose to learn from his experiences – from the guards and fellow prisoners. He was free from the day-to-day brutality of the concentration camp because of his thoughts. Because of how he responded to his circumstances.

Our quote today is by author and speaker Roger Dawson.

“The most self-destructive thought that any person can have
 is thinking that he or she is not in total control of his or her life.
That’s when, ‘Why me?’ becomes a theme song.”

So you, and you alone, write the song that makes the whole world sing. Make your life a melody and enjoy inner harmony.

Next time, we’ll discuss why shy people make the best networkers. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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