I am very good at complaining. It’s like my super power! Oh and blaming, I have that one down as well. Pretty much if something goes wrong it cannot be my fault! I didn’t do it, didn’t cause it and if you think I did I will complain until you stop talking!
I would guess we are all really good at complaining, what most of us are NOT good at is stopping. I mean really who wants to stop doing their super power! But maybe, just maybe – and hear me out here – complaining shouldn’t be our go to.
There is a difference between talking about an issue and complaining about it!
For example let’s say at my job the wrong documents are provided to the client. I could complain, “they didn’t really tell me which ones” or “the dumb review team imaged them so I provided them” or I could say “wow, ok this is an issue how do we resolve it now and how do we keep it from happening going forward”.
Complaining as a leader only makes us look, well.. dumb! We look like we have no idea what we are doing and then we make our team and ourselves look really like we have no clue!
Honestly we might not have a clue! The issue might be one where we simply aren’t sure what happened. Let me tell you the team and the client usually don’t care. They want the issue fixed AND they want to know it won’t happen again.
Complaining to ANYONE doesn’t resolve the issue. You can talk about it, talk through how you think it happened if your goal is to attempt to resolve the issue from happening again, but complaining isn’t going to help.
Now many of you are probably asking, well how do I know I am complaining well you have to stop and ask yourself – why am I talking about this? Do I need to vent? (That’s actually OK if it’s with someone you trust and don’t work with) or am I simply complaining because something bad happened. If it’s the latter, then STOP! Take a breath and relax. Usually work mistakes aren’t that big of a deal and noone is going to die over them.
Take a step back and realize that you or someone on your team made a mistake (we are human it will happen) and figure out how to resolve it.
Today I want you to start to think about when you complain, is it in the car at other drives, the grocery store, about your spouse or significant other, kids? Then stop yourself and ask if this is really going to get you to the end result? If this isn’t going to resolve the issue then STOP! If you are venting, give yourself 5 minutes to vent and then STOP! Then either work through a solution or take a walk.. Either way as leaders we need to STOP complaining.