If you’re wondering how to be responsible, it’s actually quite simple. Being responsible has all sorts of meanings, but the principles that hold value are always the same. One thing to keep in mind is that there are systems in place that need to be changed, not human value. In terms of effectiveness, blaming individuals is ineffective and not responsible. For example: rather then get upset at my employee for coming to work late, I’d check what’s happening in his life that is CAUSING him to come late. If the time I want him to come in is too early, then maybe I should work with him on a schedule that works better for him.
Rather than blame the individual, it makes more sense to evaluate current systems that are in place. Society is constantly changing so we have to keep in mind that all systems in place will eventually have to change as well.
- Applying personal responsibility is an irresponsible cop-out
- All problems and hurdles have roots that need to be attended to
- Emotions have no place in problem solving
- Morals have no place in problem solving
- Being responsible is attending to what’s effective
How to Be Responsible
The price of greatness is responsibility.
Put simply, responsibility is being able to understand the big picture. There is almost always an environmental factor that is the root of a problem. There are systems in place that we all play by. Problem solving comes in when we have to challenge those systems in place in order to encourage desirable behavior. Proper problem solving is what responsibility is all about. Being able to scientifically break down information in an unbiased way is the definition of how to be responsible.
Instead of blaming others and calling them out on behavior that you believe is ineffective or even counter effective to your company or team, discuss. Discussion is key. It solves nothing to attack someone and attack their sense of character. Morals have no place in problem solving. Understanding behavior means understanding the environment that encouraged this behavior. If your girlfriend wants to leave you, it’s easy to blame her for being a bad girlfriend, but it’s hard to come to terms with the fact that the conditions in your relationship are what contribute to it. It’s not as personal as you think.
Let go of Values
It’s important to make sure your values in the current system that you’re in don’t turn into stone. In other words, being indoctrinated to one system only leaves you bound to the effects of that environment. Without realizing it, you’ll find yourself defending that value system as absolute truth and hardly ever challenging it.
The current work ethics in America for example have been the same for so many years. Work 9-5, have a tucked shirt and tie, 30 minute lunch, and your boss has last word. Google, Red Bull, SAS and countless other newly renovated companies have thought about how to be responsible. What is the result? Amazing, comfortable work environments for the employees. Why? Because when employees are happy and comfortable, the quality of their work goes up and business is consistent. Problem solving starts with letting go of values and sticking to the facts!