Do you spend your energy attempting to manipulate or empower others?

“Politics is when people choose their words and actions based on how they want others to react rather than based on what they really think.”

Patrick Lencioni

I see this pretty simply. Do you tell people what they want to hear, so they will do what you want them to do, or do you tell people what they need to hear so they can do what needs to be done?

Choose wisely. One is manipulative, the other is empowering…

What gives?

“Remember, teamwork begins by building trust. And the only way to do that is to overcome our need for invulnerability.”

Patrick Lencioni

If you must have all the answers, or be right in every circumstance then vulnerability is missing. Without the ability to be vulnerable to others then cultivating trust is difficult if not impossible.

So if this is the case, why exactly do you have to be right?

Define success…

“Where there is humility, there is more success, and lasting success.”

Patrick Lencioni

As many have said “humility is a funny thing, the first time you think you have it you actually don’t”. So what then is success?

I think the key to this quote is to defining what success really means to you. If success is serving others, enabling others, and helping others, before thinking of your own needs, then that is humility. Anything else really isn’t lasting success…

The man in the mirror…

“The best kind of accountability on a team is peer-to-peer. Peer pressure is more efficient and effective than going to the leader, anonymously complaining, and having them stop what they are doing to intervene.”

Patrick Lencioni

The key to accountability is the willingness to be wrong. Are you willing, and able, to look in the mirror and say to yourself, “you were wrong, you could or should have done or said something differently.” This is is easy to say, but incredibly hard to do, especially when emotions are involved.

Does your identity revolve around being “right” or “doing what is right?” If it is the latter then you have a tremendous leg up on 99% of the world where the default state is to point the finger at someone or something else and say it was “their fault.” If you are focused on doing what is right then that will guide your actions and make self-accountability and ownership much much easier.

I like to think of peer-to-peer accountability as an incredible opportunity to recruit others to help “watch my six” and offer insight and perspective to ensure that what I think I am saying and doing is actually what is being conveyed. Others can become the “accountability mirror” that help you own your behaviors and actions.

To build this degree of trust though is a two-way street, if a person is excellent at delivering sage advice and perspective, but can’t receive it in return, and action on it, then their insight and input will be limited because trust is limited. Foster those relationships that will tell you what you really need to hear, even if you don’t want to hear it, and seek the same from you in return.

To do this, you have to seek it out, and you have to be willing to be wrong. Accountability is ownership, and you are always the owner, 100% of the time…

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