Monday, August 27, 2012

Take The Fall

It's interesting to watch people react to failure. In a world dominated by a CYA mentality, the reactions to problems are as extensive and varied as there are people in our organizations. As an HR practitioner, I see the maneuvering that goes on when problems arise and leaders run for cover. Instead of diving into the issue (which requires leaders to not take failures personally => big issue I know!), they all too often look to place blame.

Don't they realize these maneuvers are so embarrassingly transparent that everyone can see what's really going on? I liken it to the lame attempts to grab power during times of change. The power grabs rarely work, and quite honestly erode the leaders credibility in the eyes of those they attempted to outwit.

What If It's A Member of Your Team?
Let's have this scenario hit a little closer to home. Let's say that the error that occurred is from a member of your staff. How do you react? Are you quick to have a stern talk and reach for a disciplinary form; or, is there another option? What about taking the fall on behalf of your team member?

If you're in a leadership role you probably have invested the time to build your professional equity with those that are dissatisfied with the error. Right? To me, that means you have an opportunity to shield your employee from the blame (or worse, a loss of trust) that is undoubtedly headed their way.

How About You
How do you handle those awkward moments when the area you're responsible for has dropped the ball? How you decide to manage your emotions, and the subsequent action you take will speak volumes about your leadership style.

Have you ever even tried taking the fall?

I'd love to hear from you.

No Excuses.

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