December 1, 2016

Stop it!



“I know it was your idea, but it was my idea to use your idea.” 


The benefit of stopping certain negative behaviors can be far greater than all the positive ones combined. The following bad habits create challenges in interactions with others. CEOs often wrongly attribute their successes to these habits.

Promoting my value

Adding too much value:  Needing to add our two cents to every discussion.


Claiming credit that we do not deserve: The most annoying way to overestimate our contributions to any success.

Passing judgment: The need to rate others and impose our standards on them.

Starting with "No," "But," or "However": These negative qualifiers say to everyone, "I'm right, You're wrong."

Making destructive comments: The needless sarcasms and cutting remarks that we think make us sound sharp and witty.

Overusing emotions

Speaking when angry: Using emotional volatility as a management tool.

Negativity: "Let me explain why that won't work": The need to share our negative thoughts even when we were not asked.

Clinging to the past: The need to deflect blame away from ourselves and onto events and people from our past.

Making excuses: The need to reposition our annoying behavior as a permanent fixture so people excuse us for it.

Playing favorites: Failing to see that we are treating someone unfairly.


Empowering the Ego

An excessive need to be Me: Reframing faults as virtues because they're who we are.

Passing the buck: The need to blame everyone but ourselves.

Refusing to express regret: The inability to take responsibility for our actions, admit we're wrong, or recognize how our actions affect others.

Winning too much: The need to win at all costs and in all situations - when it matters, when it doesn't, and when it's totally beside the point.

Telling the world how smart you are: The need to show people we're smarter than they think we are.


Upholding boundaries

Withholding information:  Refusing to share information with others to maintain an advantage over them.

Failing to give proper recognition: The inability to praise and reward.

Not listening: Passive-aggressive form of disrespect for colleagues.

Failing to express gratitude:  Bad manners, plain and simple.

Punishing the messenger: Attacking the innocent who are only trying to help.


Adapted from a post by Marshall Goldsmith ("To help others develop, start with yourself.")