Posts Tagged ‘live your word’

Live your word

Monday, March 3rd, 2014

It’s a busy day in the office. You told Gary that you’d have the report to him by the end of the day, but with all the other fires that have flared up this morning, you haven’t even started. Now you realize that it isn’t humanly possible for you to finish the report today, much less do it well.

Don’t wait until the end of the day arrives, then tell Gary it isn’t done. The time to renegotiate that deadline is the MOMENT you know the deadline isn’t going to happen.

This isn’t just about the project. It’s about living your word and maintaining a clear and direct line of communication. Approach the person who assigned the task and propose an alternative deadline. Having done all that you can do, chances are that they will be fine with the change.

But if you miss the deadline without renegotiating, all bets are off. Even if the deadline itself turns out not to be a big deal this time, the other person is left with one message: If this HAD been an essential deadline, this person would have blown it. It’s incredibly hard to fully regain someone’s trust after that.

And heaven forbid you establish a pattern of missed deadlines. If that’s the case, you might never carry the ball again.

Understand that missing the deadline is almost never the problem. It’s the surprise of the missed deadline that creates chaos and uncertainty. So maintain an open line of communication, and live your word.