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Building Relationships: It's All Your Fault - How To Quit Working
Building Relationships: It’s All Your Fault

Building Relationships: It’s All Your Fault

One of the 13 decisions I made early on in my life was to never blame anyone for anything. Ever. That means taking 100% responsibility for EVERYTHING. Even if someone “wrongs” me, it was my fault for not setting better expectations, not creating a situation where I had as much control as I should have, or simply choosing to rely on the wrong person.

While nothing I’m saying is really controversial, most people have a silent objection. That silent objection is articulated something like this: “But that means I’m letting the person who was ‘wrong’ off the hook, which is NOT FAIR.”

Not true at all. I discuss how this affects your relationship with clients and prospects in this week’s blog post and short video, which you can watch below or just scroll down and keep reading.

This problem is this. When you blame others,

YOU GIVE THEM CONTROL.

If you view it from the standpoint of ‘how can I handle this differently next time,’ you are in control. If you are blaming someone else, you’ve given them control and you are the helpless victim. Let’s look at how this applies to building relationships with clients and prospects.

I follow this thought process in everything I do, and particularly with clients and prospects. Despite the many great reasons above for never blaming anyone, there are some really good reasons to keep this in mind when dealing with clients and prospects.

1)Any time someone feels “blamed”, right or wrong, it is sending the relationship downhill.

2)When you start blaming clients and prospects, you are losing control of your business.

3)When you are constantly looking for how YOU can do things better, you are constantly improving your business.

Never Blame

I had a situation the other day with one of my highest paying clients. We had a meeting on the calendar and

Building Relationships Its All Your Fault

Building Relationships Its All Your Fault

the time on my calendar was two hours later than he believed the meeting was. This ended up being a time zone misunderstanding, however, nobody at my company did anything “wrong.” We did not provide any incorrect information and we did do an adequate amount of confirmation and validation. However, I did apologize and indicate that I will provide additional clarity next time. Now, we provide more time zone detail in our confirmations. Stronger business processes.

Keep Control

If there is one thing I could communicate to the world, it would be that when you blame others, you are simply giving away your control to them. If you blame clients and prospects for things that don’t go the way you want, you’ve given THEM control of your business and removed your control. I’ve seen too many entrepreneurs get caught in that trap. Never go there.

Constantly Improve

When you are looking at how YOU can improve a situation, you are keeping control of it and making everything in your business better and of higher quality. If you are putting things in place that actually prevent or deal with the “bad things” that clients or prospects do, you are building a business that is rock solid and stronger than your competitors’.

What Can I Do About It?

1)Just change the way you think about everything to be view every situation from the standpoint of “how could have handled this situation differently?” Just thinking that way empowers you in a huge way.

2)When there is a situation where something didn’t go the way you both expected, find a way to respond and use language that clearly outlines what happened and what YOU are going to do to fix it. This shows that you take responsibility and that you really CARE about your clients’ success and are willing to take action.

3)Every time something doesn’t go the way you want it to, make it a learning experience, and incorporate the learnings into your processes and procedures. This builds your business and makes everything you do higher quality.

As a side note, this mentality is very freeing. It opens you up to be calmer, more successful and in control of your business. Apply it to your life, too.

Let me know what you think. Comment below and let me know what changes you could make that would put you more in control of your business?

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About Jeff Steinmann

Jeff wants to help you Live More. He is the author of How to Quit Working, A Simple Plan to Quit Your Job for a Life of Freedom. He hosts a weekly show called The How to Quit Working Show that features lessons from Freedom Fanatics who quit their soul-sucking 9-5 job and created a business that lets them live a passionate life of freedom. Jeff also writes for several media outlets, including The Huffington Post, Lifehack and Elite Daily. Most of all, Jeff is a Freedom Fanatic, fiercely devoted to finding a better way to “do life”.

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  • Daniel

    Nice. Good article Jeff.

  • Sharon Rohrbach

    Love this blog Such wisdom!

  • Kasey Brown

    Listen.

    You’re telling people not to blame anyone else for
    anything… and that everything that happens is their fault. Alright.
    What about rape victims? What about starving children in Africa? What
    about victims of torture or violence? What about people brutally
    punished for crimes they didn’t commit? What about the hopelessly sick
    who can’t afford the basic medicines they need to get well?

    I’ll put it as blunt as I can. No one in the =history= of wrong, was ever
    wronger, than you are right now. This kind of mentality can *only* come
    from someone who has been spoon-fed into adulthood, and is so rich and
    so pampered, that they cannot relate to what real life is like for other
    people who haven’t grown up inside a cotton jar.

    I hope this somehow manages to sink in. If not to you, then perhaps to one of those
    goons who are actually agreeing with you. It’s one thing to say “don’t
    blame others”. That’s a good general rule of thumb and I think most of
    us could agree. But you don’t leave it at that. You’re saying everything
    that happens to a person is that person’s *FAULT*.

    I don’t know what else to say. You’ve either got something mentally wrong with you,
    or you’re just outstandingly sheltered and have never made a tougher
    decision than what toy to have in your happy meal.

  • Kasey Akira

    Listen.

    You’re telling people not to blame anyone else for
    anything… and that everything that happens is their fault. Alright.
    What about rape victims? What about starving children in Africa? What
    about victims of torture or violence? What about people brutally
    punished for crimes they didn’t commit? What about the hopelessly sick
    who can’t afford the basic medicines they need to get well?

    I’ll put it as blunt as I can. No one in the =history= of wrong, was
    ever wronger, than you are right now. This kind of mentality can *only*
    come from someone who has been spoon-fed into adulthood, and is so rich
    and so pampered, that they cannot relate to what real life is like for
    other people who haven’t grown up inside a cotton jar.

    I hope this somehow manages to sink in. If not to you, then perhaps
    to one of those goons who are actually agreeing with you. It’s one thing
    to say “don’t blame others”. That’s a good general rule of thumb and I
    think most of us could agree. But you don’t leave it at that. You’re
    saying everything that happens to a person is that person’s *FAULT*.

    I don’t know what else to say. You’ve either got something mentally
    wrong with you, or you’re just outstandingly sheltered and have never
    made a tougher decision than what toy to have in your happy meal.

    PS – Hiding by deleting comments is what cowards do. If you
    want to be a professional one day, get some practice by replying to what
    I’ve said here. Running away from problems doesn’t make them go away.
    I may have 50 more IDs, so I can keep posting this for as long as it
    keeps getting removed. Either defend your points, or delete your post
    the next time you decide to delete mine, and we’ll call it even.

    • http://jeffsteinmann.com/ Jeff Steinmann

      Kasey, This blog is not intended to address any of the situations you referenced, only entrepreneurial matters. While I do openly welcome debate and people disagreeing with me, I have absolutely no tolerance for personal attacks on me or my readers, and will not engage in a debate that is set up under that pretense. I encourage you to find a different blog to read. I reserve the right to remove comments that I view to be abusive or personal attacks. Best of luck to you.