Well Excuuuuse Me!
Excuse-making is a failure pretending to succeed.
No one gets it right all the time. The issue is response.
Excuses are the skin of a reason stuffed with a lie.
A member of the team where I lead asked, “Why do I have to ask you for this every week?” I thought of several reasons, none of them good. Rather than offer an excuse, I apologized.
Don’t validate failure with an excuse.
Top 10 excuses:
Excuses are downward pivot points that limit potential.
- I forgot.
- I was busy.
- It’s not my job.
- I intended to….
- I didn’t mean to.
- I didn’t know how to.
- You didn’t tell me to ….
- I tried and it didn’t work.
- They didn’t do their part so I couldn’t do mine.
- I was waiting. (If I never hear, “I was waiting for …,” again, it will be too soon!)
Excuse-makers are unreliable.
“People who fail in life are people who make excuses.” Ben Carson
12 ways to stop making excuses:
- Value yourself enough to care about your reputation.
- Think “promise,” when you take on a task. “I just made a promise.”
- Stay in your sweetspot as much as possible.
- Realize your failure frustrates others.
- Tell trusted friends what you’re doing to improve. Be specific. “I’m trying to get ‘better’,” is an excuse waiting to happen.
- Apologize when you screw up, without making excuses. If the screw up is about results, say, “I apologize.” If the screw up is a personal offense, say, “Please forgive me.”
- Say, “Next time I’ll ….”
- Believe you have more in you.
- Say no. Don’t say yes when you can’t deliver.
- Understand that small matters. Most of life is a series of small choices.
- Define success clearly.
- Clarify expectations and deadlines.
Bonus: Write it down.
Leaders don’t make excuses they take responsibility.
What are some of your “favorite” excuses?
Which is your favorite way to stop making excuses? Additions to the list?