Standing on the side of my daughter’s soccer game this past weekend, as they were losing pretty badly, I think I heard every excuse or finger-pointing from the sidelines that one could fathom. There were comments like… “The other team has been together longer,” and “The coaches didn’t play the right players,” followed by “The kids are in new positions.” Someone mentioned that the weather had stayed too hot for October. There was even a short discussion on the material difference in population density in our area as compared to the area of New Jersey where the other team was from. It frankly crossed the border of ridiculous, and in no way, did it do any favors for our players on that field. The simple fact was that our kids did not play their best and did not fully execute on the field of play.
Look in the Mirror and Own It!
We must own our results. As leaders, we must take 100% of the blame for any failures, and share our successes with others. The only direction a finger should ever point is back at yourself – unless you are staring at a mirror. This level of ownership is not only required for true success but it sets the right example for the organization. It is a vulnerability that others will key in on and follow your lead in taking ownership for their portion, thereby creating an organization of self-accountability and a culture focused on honesty and improvement.
I encourage organizations to stop looking outside for answers. Look inside. You have the answers and the first step in finding them is full ownership.