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How can you blame


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I get a marketing newsletter every week and I thought I would share this weeks with you. there is information on how you can get the information at the bottom of this post.

Before You Blame…

Whenever something goes wrong, people (you included) tend to look for what is known as a scapegoat. Someone to blame. [:-jump]

And blame has several cousins: Justification, Politics, Self-Protection, and the worst of them all, Defending Your Position (also known as:'It Wasn't My Fault'). [%|:-)]

It never ceases to amaze me how many "perfect" people there are in the world,[:-angel] I often wonder if there isn't some great big black hole of shirked responsibility someplace.

In the business of selling blame has all kinds of directions it can take. Sales people are blamed for pretty much everything when an error occurs. And of course salespeople blame everyone else and their dog for everything that goes wrong. And of course the person who suffers is the customer. And of course the ultimate loser is the company.

When blame is thrown around it precludes work from being done. It changes productivity into negativity.

The obvious repercussions when blame continues to occur are loss of morale and loss of productivity. In other words: loss of business.

Pretty dismal picture so far, huh?[:-bigeyes]

Well luckily, below are the blame-game antidotes. Things you can do in order to stop blaming others and prevent the blame-game from reoccurring. It's an action step you can take before you blame. But here's the warning; blame is the instinctive response, defensiveness is the intensive response, self protection is the instinctive response. In order to get away from blame, clear proactive thought must be the dominate mental condition. [:-banghead]

Sounds kind of complicated but the answers below are pretty simple. NOTE WELL: If your blame-agenda is political, ignore the rest of this. [:-headache]

The key to stopping blame is intervention that leads to prevention. Blame intervention is best accomplished by "asking" rather than "blaming." Questions you will have to ask yourself first. Then questions you will have to ask of others second. And there are actions you must take that are a result of the questions you ask of yourself and others.

I know, it still sounds pretty complicated but the questions below will clear it up. Just keep in mind that it's more important to resolve than to blame.

Instead of blaming, ask yourself: [?]

1. What really happened? Where did things go wrong?

2. What can I do instead of blaming? What are my alternative ways of making the communication, and still completing the task?

3. What could we have done as a company to prevent this from occurring?

4. How can my expertise help at this moment?

5. Who will fix the situation?

6. How will that get done?

7. Who will be responsible to make sure that the blame issue is resolved?

8. Who will be responsible to make sure the blame issue doesn't happen again?

8.5. What are my ideas about how to resolve the issue temporarily and permanently?

I'm sure there are other questions you can ask of yourself and others. What I've tried to do is give you a list that will start to reverse the blame process. FYI: The opposite or reverse of blame is responsibility.

Blame is a waste of time. Blame is a waste of energy. Blame is a losing proposition -- for everyone.

I'm most concerned about people who both place blame AND defend their position. It seems as though their self image is weak and their self protection instinct is somewhat paranoid. It's almost as though they "have" to blame someone.

The blame-remedies are not easy. Nothing valuable is easy. The consequences of blame, however, are so divisive and so energy-wasting that it's worth it to make the conscious effort to reduce it or eliminate it.

The obvious key is to start with yourself. And the obvious resolve is for you to begin by accepting responsibility and/or accepting the challenge to make it right, BEFORE you have a chance to tell someone they're wrong.

And for those that say, Jeffrey, what does this have to do with sales? I will answer you with a single word: everything. It has to do with your image. It has to do with your self-esteem. And it has to do with the character of your sales people and everyone representing your company.

Want to make a start? Think about the last two or three things that went wrong in your company. What happened? Who got blamed? What did you do? Replay the tape and ask to yourself what you could have done differently (in a positive way) that might have changed the outcome, preserved the morale, and help someone else save face?

I am amazed at how little is written about blame. (I wonder who I could blame for that?)

This lesson is not an easy one, but I promise that it's a powerful one in your quest to be the best.

Free GitBit... Want more ideas on responsibility? Wanna take a self-evaluation to see how responsible you really are? Go to www.Gitomer.com - register if you're a first time user, and enter the words I'M RESPONSIBLE in the GitBit box.

Jeffrey Gitomer, author of The Sales Bible, and Customer Satisfaction is Worthless, Customer Loyalty is Priceless. President of Charlotte-based Buy Gitomer, he gives seminars, runs annual sales meetings, and conducts internet training programs on selling and customer service at www.trainone.com. He can be reached at 704/333-1112 or e-mail to salesman@gitomer.com

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