• Acknowledging my shortcomings and taking ownership in results, not blaming others
  • Accepting my responsibility to clients and colleagues and admitting my role in situation
  • Seeking accountability, focusing on self-improvement, and providing solutions

I have doubts there is any human that has not made an excuse for one reason or another. I’ve learned that instead of offering excuses for what I may have forgotten to do or just didn’t want to do, it’s best to “Just do it,” like Nike says, and then there would be no reason to make excuses.

It’s always easier to offer an excuse on why we didn’t complete a task, assignment, a review, or create a form rather than take responsibility for it. Getting a Form 470 or 471 to review at 4:55 p.m. could result in an excuse on why it needs to wait until the next day to complete it. It could be you have to leave for family reasons, you’re tired, or once the clock hits 5 p.m. you’re out the door no matter what’s in front of you (although I know this does not describe any FFLers).

Acknowledging your shortcomings and taking ownership of your faults can be difficult at times. My 8-year-old daughter has a tendency, when scolded, to blame her older sister. “Well Maya (her sister) did ____.” I hear this frequently, as most parents likely do. She does not like to admit to her role in any situation. Hopefully if we as parents start now to encourage her to take accountability for her actions when she is an adult, it will come naturally.

We have a new theme at FFL to “Serve with Integrity” and we cannot serve with integrity if we don’t accept the responsibility we have to our clients and colleagues. We are accountable for the services we provide to our clients and if there is ever a reason that we fall short we must acknowledge our shortcomings. That also coincides with our colleagues as we work together as a team to provide solutions for our clients. 

I encourage everyone that finds difficulty in admitting their role in a situation to focus on self-improvement and work towards “Offering No Excuses.”


Key Words and Phrases
Take ownership in outcomes, Agree to responsibility, Accept accountability, Provide solutions, Recognize failures, Acknowledge shortcomings, Focus on results not excuses, Admit mistakes.

Opposite Terms
Rationalize inferior work, Deny or justify a fault, Offer a pretext for failure, Provide self-justification.

GuideMarks – Distinguishing Characteristics of FFL E-rate Guides

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