You Are The Solution

Screen Shot 2013-09-12 at 8.05.32 AMAt a recent client event, I asked one of the volunteers to run an errand.  The errand was fairly simple or at least I thought it was.  One of our clients needed something from an office supply store.  I was engaged in another project and couldn’t do it myself.  All we needed was this supply to be picked up and brought back to the meeting.  It was a simple job that should have taken 20-30 minutes.

After about 45 minutes, I broke away from what I was doing to make sure the task had been completed.  When I found the volunteer I asked him if he had picked the supply up and brought it back to the client.  He informed me that he had found the supply at a local office supply store.  I again asked if he had picked the product up?  He responded that no he hadn’t because he didn’t have a car.

When I made the request for him to pick the product up I was very specific and detailed in explaining what the assignment was.  I emphasized that we were on a tight deadline and the purpose for the request and for the tight deadline.  He confirmed that he understood.  I also told him to let me know if he had questions or needed assistance.

Needless to say, I was stunned at his lack of effort and initiative in completing the task. As a result of his effort, I wasn’t as understanding as I could be given the clients deadline and need for this product.  I immediately left and found a trusted colleague to perform the task.  My colleague didn’t have a car either, but instead of letting that stop me from getting the product for my client, I gave him my car keys and corporate credit card so he could go and accomplish what needed to be done.  The volunteers lack of effort left us in a bind with our client and made for some tense moments as we frantically tried to fulfill his request in the appointed deadline.

This experience drove home to me the lack of initiative, accountability and ownership some people take in the way they perform their jobs.  Especially when it comes to accomplishing tasks associated with a deadline.   In my mind this individual doesn’t have what it takes to accomplish great things in his career and will probably be left on the sidelines wondering why he isn’t more successful the rest of his career.

Screen Shot 2013-09-12 at 8.06.03 AMI’ve written about the importance of deadlines in the past but it bears repeating in this context. In situations like this, the ability to meet deadlines is critical to success.  With that in mind, here are five tips to ensure that people are taking ownership of their careers and are meeting critical deadlines.

By being a problem solver and finding the solutions to issues and problems you take ownership, are accountable and take the initiative to achieve success in any walk of life.  If you adopt the attitude that you are the solution you’ll enhance your career and become the type of employee that advances and is able to achieve your on personal career goals.

Jeremy KartchnerAbout Jeremy Kartchner

Jeremy Kartchner is a Partner at Snapp Conner PR and has more than 15 years experience in both technology and sports PR.  In addition to his responsibilities with Snapp Conner PR, Kartchner also works with the Utah Jazz as a member of its Game Night public relations staff where he is responsible for tracking and providing game time statistics for local, national and international media and conducting pre and post game player and coach interviews. He’s a sports fan, golfer, father of three, husband to one hottie, partially bionic, cavity free, Olympics junkie and wanna be blogger.

Author: Jeremy Kartchner | Google+

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