5 Steps From Lying to Responsibility

Liar or truth-teller

Everyone lies every day.

“How are you feeling?”

“Just fine,” you reply. Actually, you feel terrible but don’t want to talk about it. You lie.

Leaders are tempted to lie when ________:

  1. Under-performers need encouragement.
  2. Telling the truth reveals weaknesses or failure.
  3. Reputation is at stake, theirs or others.
  4. Insecurity wins.
  5. Hiding problems feels easier than exposing them.

Read more on Facebook 12/12 /12.

I’m tempted to lie to protect the appearance of competence. It happened yesterday when I forgot to hit the record button for, “Writing Blogs that Get Read,” my first ever webinar. I’d promised participants free access to the recording. But there is no recording!

5 steps from lying to responsibility:

First thought:

Lie. Say it was technical difficulty. But, is failing to hit the record button technical? It involves a mouse. It must be. Right?

Second thought:

Make truthful excuses. It was my first time. Everyone makes mistakes.

Third thought:

Participants paid. You’re responsible. Absolutely!

Fourth thought:

Tell the truth. No excuses. Rip the scab off that dang thing.

Fifth thought:

Repeat “Writing Blogs that Get Read” and record it this time.

Truth-tellers embrace responsibility.
Liars reject responsibility.

“Tell the truth. You are always better off telling it like it is and moving on,” Denny Strigl, former president and CEO of Verizon Wireless.


Leadership stands on trust. Lying destroys leadership. All successful leaders are truth-tellers.

What makes truth-telling difficult?

What advice can you offer leaders who are tempted to lie?

The encore presentation of “Writing Blogs that Get Read,” is 12/19/12 at 1:00 p.m. EST. I’m recording this one! Join me.