Leadership Tip of the Week
If you want people to view you as reliable follow the simple principle: “Say what you will do and do what you say”.
When commitments are involved don’t allow conversations to be unclear, vague or open-ended when commitments are involved. Make sure you and others are always clear about ‘what you are on the hook for’.
Once you have committed, consistently deliver on what you promised, without excuses.
If you keep every promise you make your promises are probably too small. There will be times when you will not be able to deliver on what you promised. That’s acceptable if you manage your promises and people’s expectations.
If you fail to deliver on a commitment, own it, acknowledge it and take responsibility without stories and excuses. Often that means making a new promise to fix the problem.
If you realize before your promise is due that you are not going to deliver on it in the time frame people expect, communicate that immediately and reset expectations.
Some people refer to these strategies as “covering your behind” and it is if you do it in the context of making excuses, blaming others and circumstances.
However, if you simply state the facts – “I promised X, and I didn’t deliver” – and take responsibility you will remain reliable and credible, you can then make a new promise.