Organizations that don’t eliminate blame right now are burning money.
That’s my conclusion from working with a bunch of organizations since 1986. In fact, The Question Behind the Question (QBQ!)—a tool for practicing PERSONAL ACCOUNTABILITY—was born as an antidote to blame. Only when individuals engage in accountability, responsibility, and on-the-job ownership will the very real dragons of finger-pointing, culprit-seeking, and blame be slain.
This is when organizations become … outstanding.
But why bother? Does it really matter, this blame thing?
Well, you decide after exploring our itemized list titled …
13 Costs of Blame
COB #1: Blame leaves problems unsolved.
COB #2: Blame creates fear, hurt, and anger.
COB #3: Blame destroys creativity, innovation, and risk-taking.
COB #4: Blame obstructs teamwork.
COB #5: Blame lowers productivity.
COB #6: Blame kills trust.
COB #7: Blame—internally—pushes “external” customers away.
COB #8: Blame hardens positions, hindering conversation.
COB #9: Blame limits listening and hearing.
COB #10: Blame blocks learning.
COB #11: Blame encourages good people to leave.
COB #12: Blame increases resistance to change.
COB #13: Blame causes staff dis-engagement.
(For all you execs, HR, and training people working hard to survey “employee engagement” and raise your scores, please note #13!)
And let’s add a bonus COB. If you believe happiness, joy, and positive thinking are important on the job, just think what blame and finger-pointing do to those critical components of a workplace culture. It’s not a pretty picture.
Now, a thought:
Since there is no Cost of Blame line item in our budgets, the real cost of blame is that we don’t know its real cost—financially.
What do you think the items on our COB list would cost an organization in dollars?
Maybe this is where I say just take it from a guy who’s been around a while, letting blame persist in your organization is like burning cash.
And, bottom line, who would want to do that?!
Can you add to our list?
Which of our COBs above is your organization experiencing right now?
What do you plan to do about it?