This is a guest article by Marlene Chism, who will be conducting the audio conference “Stop Workplace Drama: The 5 Traits of Authentic, Drama-Free Leaders” this Thursday, June 28.
Managing your business would be a breeze if you could eliminate the time wasters and energy drains like office gossip, power struggles, tattling and relationship challenges. Think about how smoothly your department, operation or company would run if each person in the company knew how to communicate effectively, handle disappointment and stress without resorting to blame, criticism or finger pointing. A workplace climate of stress and negativity would be replaced with personal growth and empowerment, and customers would notice the increase in professionalism, attention to detail and service.
This vision is possible when you embrace the principle of personal responsibility in your hiring and in your management philosophy.
If you want to take your business to new levels, now is the perfect time to institute The Vow of Personal Responsibility. Share the vow with new hires and ask them to sign it. At the beginning of the year, make copies and distribute the vow and read it together at a staff meeting.
Invite discussion about how difficult it can be to live responsibly, and ask for each person to talk about areas where they could improve personally and professionally. (Be mindful of your own challenges as a leader, and realize that all of us have blind spots and shortcomings, and we are all at various levels in our ability to live responsibly.) This exercise will create a sense of camaraderie, as each person realistically reflects on areas of personal growth.
Then invite everyone to sign and date The Vow of Personal Responsibility. Review at each meeting and hold each other accountable. By doing this each month, you raise the level of awareness in your practice; you start to eliminate the victim mentality as you develop responsible co- creators that contribute value to your organization.
The Vow of Personal Responsibility:
I vow to be responsible for my life experience.
I am responsible for how I use time.
I am responsible for how I use money.
I am responsible for the status of my relationships.
I am responsible for getting my needs met.
I am the creator of my experiences.
Even though I may not see my choices immediately in challenging circumstances or situations, I am willing to recognize the fact that choices are always available to me.
The more I recognize my choices, the more responsible I become. The less I complain, judge and blame others, the more empowered I become.
I am not a victim to my emotions or to the situation around me, or to other people’s behaviors.
I agree to recognize that when I have an unwanted experience, and as a result fall into patterns of blame, resentment, justification or judgment, it is possibly because I failed to ask for what I want.
Or perhaps I failed to set a boundary, failed to speak up, or I was unrealistic in my expectations, or in some other way unclear in my communication.
I accept that even in my disappointments there is an opportunity to grow, to learn how to communicate more effectively, to step into a new truth, and to see others differently.
I reap the rewards and the consequences of the choices I make, as well as the unconscious reactions I have.
Because I have choice, I am responsible, and because I am responsible I am empowered.
I gladly accept the role of creator and take the vow of responsibility in all areas of my life personally and professionally.
About the author: Marlene Chism is a professional speaker, trainer and the author of Stop Workplace Drama, (Wiley 2011). For more information visit www.marlenechism.com or the web at www.stopworkplacedrama.com. Sign up for Chism’s upcoming audio conference “Stop Workplace Drama: The 5 Traits of Authentic, Drama-Free Leaders” today!
[Image Source: Serenity Photography Ltd]