What Got You Here Won’t Get You There
Twenty of the most common faults that hold you back from the top (pgs 40 – 41):
1. Winning too much: The need to win at all costs in all situations—when it matters, when it doesn’t, and when it’s totally beside the point.
Examples of this behavior: argumentative, put others down, ignore others, play favorites.
2. Adding too much value: The overwhelming desire to add our two cents to every discussion.
Examples of this behavior: Improving the content of another’s idea by adding my two cents worth.
3. Passing judgment: The need to rate others and impose our standards on them.
Examples of this behavior: Grading people’s answers in a defensive way.
4. Making destructive comments: The needless sarcasms and cutting remarks that we think make us sound sharp and witty.
Examples of this behavior: Any untrue comment that will hurt the customer or our company.
5. Starting with “No,” “But,” or “However”: The overuse of these negative qualifiers which secretly say to everyone, “I’m right. You’re wrong.”
Examples of this behavior: Commonly used words (verbal/written) in order to gain power.
6. Telling the world how smart we are: The need to show people we’re smarter than they think we are.
Examples of this behavior: Nodding my head when others are talking suggests that I’ve heard this before.
7. Speaking when angry: Using emotional volatility as a management tool.
Examples of this behavior: Reserving a special place in my mind for those colleagues we brand as “easily combustible.”
8. Negativity or “Let me explain why that won’t work”: The need to share our negative thoughts even when we weren’t asked.
Examples of this behavior: Inserting myself into a situation as chief arbiter or senior critic.
9. Withholding information: The refusal to share information in order to maintain an advantage over others.
Examples of this behavior: Answering questions with a question. Leaving people out of the “information flow.” (Un-forwarded emails or meeting invites).
10. Failing to give proper recognition: The inability to praise and reward.
Examples of this behavior: Depriving people of deserved recognition for success/accomplishments.
11. Claiming credit that we don’t deserve: The most annoying way to overestimate our contribution to any success.
Examples of this behavior: Hogging recognition for ourselves.
12. Making excuses: The need to reposition our annoying behavior as a permanent fixture so people excuse us for it.
Examples of this behavior: Saying I’m sorry by using a lame excuse.
13. Clinging to the past: The need to deflect blame away from ourselves and onto events and people from our past; a subset of blaming everyone else.
Examples of this behavior: Using the past as a weapon against others. To highlight something positive about ourselves at the expense of someone else.
14. Playing favorites: Failing to see that we are treating someone unfairly.
Examples of this behavior: “A dog never talks back!”
15. Refusing to express regret: The inability to take responsibility for our actions, admit we’re wrong, or recognizes how our actions affect others.
Examples of this behavior: Apologizing forces us to cede power or control.
16. Not listening: The most passive-aggressive form of disrespect for colleagues.
Examples of this behavior: Displaying extreme impatience, multitasking.
17. Failing to express gratitude: The most basic form of bad manners.
Examples of this behavior: Failing to say “thank you!”
18. Punishing the messenger: The misguided need to attack the innocent who are usually only trying to help us.
Examples of this behavior: A combination of #’s 4, 10, 11, 12, 16, 17
19. Passing the buck: The need to blame everyone but ourselves.
Examples of this behavior: “Saddling others with the shame of our failure.”
20. An excessive need to be “me”: Exalting our faults as virtues simply because they’re who we are.
Examples of this behavior: Always expressing our opinion, no matter how hurtful or noncontributory it may be.
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