Packing for the leadership journey.
Posted on January 29, 2015
When going on a leadership journey, one of the first things that you put in your leadership luggage is “responsibility.” Long before a leader can create a team, establish goals or solve problems, a leader must take on that heavy burden of responsibility.
Before we look at responsibility, let’s be honest about something, all of us enjoy results. Our society is one that is driven by results. We complain when our tea glass gets empty, when our food is not the way we like it, or when the results are not what we expect.
Being a leader is not that much different. When it all comes down to it, we are seeking results. We might be resolving the issue at hand or trying to get our team to be more efficient, but at the end of the day, we are looking for favorable results.
Now that we have spent some time in the honest department, we have to discuss what happens when the results are, let’s just say not in our favor. What do we do when the results are catastrophic? I want to provide you a top 5 list of techniques that will help you when the results for your team end up looking like failure.
1. When putting your team together, always get someone on the team that is disposable. Allow them enough involvement with the project so that when it all goes wrong, you can easily give them the credit for the failure. I like to call this one “It is not my fault, it is his fault!”
2. When all else fails, blame the team. After all, when we get down to it, this is an exercise in survival. If it takes a sacrifice to keep you breathing than sacrifice the team. This is when the failure is larger than one person. I like to call this one “It is not my fault, it is their fault!”
3. Blame it on a lack of communication. Blame those that gave you the task in the firs place. If they would have communicated better in the first place, then your actions would have led to success. When the failure is larger than the team, blame the boss. I like to call this one “It is not my fault, it is your fault!”
4. Blame society. We all know that we live in a fallen world and if things don’t go our way then the easiest way, to avoid being the failure, is to blame every other human being in the world. When the failure is larger than a team member, a team or even a boss, then you will need to blame the world. I like to call this one “It is not my fault, it is the way the world treated me!”
5. Blame technology. If you have to blame something and the blaming of all other humans sound a little ridiculous then blame a piece of technology. Since your computer can’t defend itself, it makes for an easy target. I like to call this one “It is not my fault, it is a thing’s fault!”
Now there is one other way to handle failure but it might hurt a little. The answer is for you to assume the fully responsibility that comes with leadership. It means that you need to be accountable.
When you are accountable it means that you have made the decision to assume responsibility and take the required steps to problem solve before the situation gets out of hand. But when and if it does go sideways, you still own it. You don’t pass blame or point fingers, after all, you are the leader.
This week’s experiment; are you trying to pass the blame to others? If you are then take on the responsibility of leadership.
Here is a couple of quotes about blame that have helped me.
“The search for a scapegoat is the easiest of all hunting expeditions.”
― Dwight D. Eisenhower
“All violence is the result of people tricking themselves into believing that their pain derives from other people and that consequently those people deserve to be punished.”
― Marshall B. Rosenberg,