OFFER NO EXCUSES
  • 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

COMMENTARY:
The GuideMark, “Offer No Excuses” is more like a mantra that encourages a frame of mind than a prescription.

Sometimes the solution that you need is not a set of steps to follow or a specific tool to use. Often what you actually need is a different perspective or a change in the dynamic. This is the sort of solution that you can find with the “Offer No Excuses” GuideMark.

This GuideMark is more of a helpful frame of mind than a prescription for the problem that you are facing. The great usefulness of this GuideMark is how it forces you to narrow your view and focus on things that will move you forward or help you in the future.

Offer No Excuses answers the question that you are not likely to ask: What is the one thing, or set of things that will definitely not solve my problems? (hint: excuses)

Like fine wine with stinky cheese this GuideMark pairs well with and enhances being Solution Minded. Finding a solution without getting hung up on excuses forces you to stay focused on those things that are attainable and can make greater impact.

Consider: you may diagnose yourself with an interrupting problem – you find yourself jumping in before others have wrapped up their end of the conversation. Of course, you (probably) aren’t doing this because you are inconsiderate or don’t want to listen, but you know it comes across that way and you’d like to stop.

An excuse would be to think, “Gee I wish my parents had taught me to wait to speak until others have finished talking. They really screwed that up”. If this is where you are looking for solutions, your best option is to cryogenically freeze your head and wait until the future world can 1) revive your head (hopefully 1.a. would be to reattach your head to a body. A super healthy one) and 2) send you back in time to ask your parents to do a better job with the whole interrupting thing. This is probably hard to pull off, and then you have the prospect of your disembodied head stuck in a time paradox. You’re better off interrupting everyone.

If you reframe your solution to factor out excuses, you may find that coaching, seeking accountability from those you most commonly interact with, and practiced discipline may present the best (if less exotic) path forward.

Applying the Offer No Excuses GuideMark to your life will foster progress and helpful solutions, while protecting you against stagnation, sloppy work and repeating mistakes.

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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.

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GuideMarks – Distinguishing Characteristics of FFL E-rate Guides

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