I Was Wrong

Admit it, the title made you look. Good, because this isn’t a bait and switch blog post. I began writing a few months back and sought to identify subjects that spoke to marketing and communications. Now, I’m here to tell you I was wrong about some things.

While the concept of accountability is often discussed, the practice occurs too rarely – especially in today’s “drive-by” social world where everyone can have an opinion instantly. For example, I am accountable for posting this blog, but I haven’t done so in a while because I was being accountable to my clients. Not an excuse, but the truth.

In my last post, I interviewed Ken Blanchard on the subject of Leadership and how it has progressed in the almost 30 years since he co-authored The One Minute Manager. Accountability should be part of that equation which I will discuss below.

Right now, for those that have graciously taken the time to read, and hopefully continue to read, this blog….here’s where I was wrong.

In the entry about planning, I discussed how the Johnson & Johnson corporate credo is an example of aspiring to a filter through which your actions should be planned and measured. I cited the current issues J&J was having with Tylenol and said the credo is probably helping as it did before.

One Food & Drug Administration investigation later, details were released that the U.S. Government will be taking on oversight of three plants where McNeil – a division of J&J – has failed to properly manufacture Tylenol and others. The credo concept is indirectly referenced in the story link announcing the sanctions. Let’s see if J&J regains accountability to its content.

A short time ago, I discussed the Federal Reserve’s review of credit and debit card fees. I took a view that perhaps this could create a scenario that could help small businesses. Maybe, I should have seen my wrong that would result from the politicking to come.

But, recent developments (and it’s not over yet) suggest that it could be another issue for small business people to worry about. However, I hopefully did shed light on something we should all be looking closely at.

Now, I feel better. I was wrong. See how easy that can be. So why don’t more people do it? Admitting failure is sometimes not viewed as admirably as it should. But, how often have you seen, and perhaps experienced, attempts to cover tracks when admitting would be easier.

Many years ago, I was working for a team and had a customer that was considering season tickets. He had a bad experience years before with another team. I assured him that I would see to it that the process was smoother than before.

We picked out seats based on the chart available, drew up the contract and exchanged money. The day comes to pick up seats and what happened? The person entering tickets had missed the contract and the seats he picked out were in another account.

Of course, some things were not in my total control, but I still owned parts of this process. I looked him in the eye and told him a mistake had been made. We then discussed how I would fix it. After absorbing the news, he said something I won’t forget:

“Y’know, I appreciate you. A lot of people would tap dance around. At least you told me you screwed up first before you told me how you are gonna fix this.”

Think about how practicing accountability is part of your plan. You can’t go wrong.


About catchdrivermarketing

Catch Driver provides marketing and communications services/consultation for small to medium size businesses and non-profits. The "Your Ideas...On Track" slogan means helping organizations and business owners with projects they want to do, but lack staff and time to execute themselves, and working to drive them to a successful outcome. See more at www.catchdriver.com.
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2 Responses to I Was Wrong

  1. Dave says:

    Glenn – Wow! Admitting you are wrong. That’s taking a big risk in this, “divert, deflect, and discredit” business/political climate we live in these days. Frankly, I think that it is refreshing and not being perfect is more of a reason to work with you than to not!

    If business people would strive to do the right thing and then be willing to admit when the missed the mark, work hard to correct the problems created, and learn from their mistakes, credibility and professionalism might just return to the business world.


    • Thanks Dave. Accountability is in short supply. I am a fan of building block approaches to things. We are all busy these days, but expecting to gloss over mistakes and not have it come back on you is flawed thinking. Thanks for the comment!

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