Accountability

I have been thinking and facing accountability every where I turn this week, and I honestly believe it explains so many personal & professional failures in all of our lives.  

1. Accountability to oneself, for most people, is useless unless you can create concrete consequences and reward systems that you force yourself to adhere to. (e.g. Very few people will truly punish themselves for not working out, not finishing a report at work or reward themselves for not smoking) Only a select few extremely strong willed individuals can and will apply harsh consequences & positive rewards to their self accountability.

 2. Accountability to others is the tenant of almost every success (e.g. I am accountable to Mr. Smith, my spouse or organization, therefore when I mess up I will feel the wrath. When I succeed, I am emotionally or financially rewarded and am personally satisfied!) More things just seem to get done when someone is held accountable for their action(s) or inaction. 

Rather than go on, and on… I think you get the point.  

Here are a couple of  questions I am personally answering this week, and as well posing to those people in my life who are accountable to me. If you are feeling brave consider answering them yourself. 

  • Who are you accountable to and what for?
  • What are you not doing that you should be, and are not being held accountable?
  • How can you use accountability to your greatest advantage?

Lastly, I have always and continue to believe that positive rewards work far better than negative punishment. But sometimes, you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do!

Warning About Go To Meeting

Don’t Use Go To Meeting… Until You Have Read This 

First thing I am going to say is that I have used and highly recommend Go To Meeting, but there are some key things people should know about this service even before they sign up for a free trial. These apply whether you use a MAC or PC. 

Here are the warnings: 

(1)   DO NOT, I repeat DO NOT, sign up for GotoMeeting  if you plan to use your work PC to conduct online meetings, unless you have cleared this with your company IT department or boss. Most companies are OK if you ask… but ask first. If you are self employed or are the boss, then disregard big kahuna. 

(2)   When you are conducting an online meeting DOUBLE & TRIPLE check before you share your screen. I know, this sounds obvious but I have heard some pretty funny stories of a Go To Meeting starting and participants are shocked by seeing something they shouldn’t.   

(3)   Lastly, as GoToMeeting now not only include screen and file sharing, but as well full audio with VOIP, make sure you have a quality microphone or headset. Nothing ruins a presentation or meeting more than a terrible sounding speaking voice. The last online presentation I attended was terrible, not because of the web service, but because the presenter had a cheap microphone. If you don’t have a microphone, just call in to the phone number GotoMeeting provides and it will be crystal clear. 

That’s it folks! Now you know, and I can sleep soundly :>) Oh, and for those of you that haven’t had the pleasure of trying it, I have a few connections and was able to get you a free month trial and $10 off at the link below.

GoToMeeting - Online Meetings Made Easy

What Does It Take

What does it take to motivate you to action?  

Is pain enough of a motivator, or is it pleasure. Think of the last big thing you have done in your life; job change, relation ship, etc. Did you act swiftly and decisively to gain pleasure or to avoid pain. There is so much power in knowing what motivates you from within. Master this skill of controlling your desire for pleasure and your avoidance of pain, which may take a lifetime by the way, and you will rarely hesitate when it counts. 

What does it take for you to decide you’ve had enough? 

Maybe it’s your job or business, maybe it’s your finances; maybe it’s a toxic relationship, or maybe its part of your life that is stressing you to the point of affecting your health. Either way, decisions or deciding is at the root of having enough. Yes, there are probably hundreds of factors at play when you make tough decisions, but not making a decision can always make things worse in the end. The good old sheet of paper of pros & cons has never become irrelevant. Pull out a sheet of paper and decide if you’ve had enough. 

What does it take to be the best at what you do? Quite simply making the decision to be the best and motivating your self to mass action. Decide.  Act. That’s what it takes!

Blind Spot

Certain cars or truck have blind spots, and as drivers we use our mirrors and best judgement to determine whats there. In other words we imagine what is there with out actually seeing it.  Often, our imagination is dead wrong , and most of us have experienced being in a car that tries to change lanes, and then suddenly realizing if you do, you are about to crash into a car that was hidden in the blind spot.

In business, we use our imagination to fill in the blanks when we don’t have all of the information, and  our customers do the same. What we think we see, is sometimes only partially true because our brains are hard wired to fill in blind spots and missing information with out us even realizing it. For example, an upset client conversation with your company’s representative goes bad, and after hearing both sides of the story you play back the recording. Wow! How could both the customer and the rep both been so wrong, do they actually even remember talking to each other. Yes, they each probably remember 10% of what was actually said, then their mind “Makes Up” the rest. Think to yourself, is there any situation that you could swear happened a certain way in your life only to discover you were completely wrong. You aren’t crazy…it’s just the way the mind works. We make up stuff to fill in the blanks.

Here is a cool demonstration to prove we all have blind spots, and by that I mean a part of your eye that you cannot see out of. The only logical, and clinical explanation, after seeing this is that every day our mind is forced to fill in the blanks. Our mind does a such good job of it we can’t tell the difference between what’s real and what our mind has conveniently filled in.

So the next time you are faced with that nagging thought of, “Did I think I just see that!” or “I can’t believe that conversation!” Remember, it might have been your mind filling in the blanks!

Print out the below picture and follow the instructions:

Blind Spot

Instructions: ( Print the sheet out and hold it in your right hand with your arm fully extended. Close your left eye and stare at the plus sign in the diagram with your right eye. Off to the right you should be able to see the spot. Now slowly move the sheet closer to your face while continuing to stare at the plus sign . At a particular distance (everyone’s a little different), the spot will disappear (it will reappear again if you move the sheet closer or farther away). You have just discovered your blind spot. )

Here is a PPT file of the image: http://www.leeraito.com/download/BlindSpot.PPT

If you have seen any other good examples please post a comment!

Lest We Forget

To my grandfathers and all those who fought or those who are fighting for the freedoms we too often take for granted each and every day…

“Thank you!”