Accountability in business drives results

Maxim #19
Don’t be a victim

The antithesis of empowerment is victimization. Within the context presented here, victims are people faced with negative situations who believe they have no alternatives available to them. In actuality, most victims do have options, but they can’t define the troublesome situation in a way to succeed, they won’t make a tough decision about what to do, or they refuse to act because they view the options before them as too expensive. Anyone can fall prey to this trap. Victims convince themselves they have no choice, but, in fact, choices are available. They are simply difficult to define, hard to select, and expensive to execute. For example, an individual could confront another person he or she is having problems with, but may then face anger or punishment. People could risk offending or irritating someone at work, or take the chance of losing a key position or possibly even their job. They may not like these alternatives; nonetheless, they exist. Victims, however, take the easy way out. … Victimized employees and managers spend a great deal of their time and energy complaining about who or what outside themselves dominates their life. Empowered people spend their time and energy deciding what they want to achieve and what price they will pay for that success. 
Excerpt from “Leading at the Edge of Chaos” by Daryl R. Conner.
People take on a victim position when they refuse to accept the accountability for the job they are assigned. Victims give up on tasks or try to pass the accountability onto someone else.
Here are some examples of classic “victims” in business:
  • Manager blames other departments
  • Manager blames the staff
  • Staff blame the manager
  • Management blames the union
  • Sales reps blame the economy
“Don’t be a victim” simply means don’t let the environment or circumstances you find yourself in ever be an excuse for not accomplishing what you commit to. Once you say you are going to do something, you accept the responsibility of that project or task. No matter what effort is required, you need to find a way. If you adopt this attitude you will be more successful in everything you do and you will also quickly learn not to over-promise or over-commit.