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Apr 23

Overcoming a Blame Culture – Our Top 20 Suggestions

Does your organisation suffer from a culture of blame?  If so you will no doubt be aware of the negative effects that it can have, not only on the morale of your people but on your business as a whole.  One of the things that leaders who work in organisations often ask is “how do we address the issue of a blame culture?”  Here are the top 20 things that leaders can do start to turn a culture of blame into a culture of responsibility…

  1. Promote and model openness, honesty and truth
  2. Promote and model taking responsibility and being held accountable
  3. Promote and demonstrate respect for people which includes acceptance that we all make mistakes
  4. Promote and encourage partnership, collaboration and co-operation between people
  5. Work towards reducing panic and fear in the organisation
  6. Begin to focus on “How to fix …” rather than “who broke …”
  7. Avoid using punishment when people make mistakes
  8. Recognise people for their achievements
  9. Encourage and expect feedback
  10. Give feedback on your observations not your judgements
  11. Focus on solution finding rather than problem finding
  12. Ask for multiple solutions to every problem found
  13. Focus on continuous improvement
  14. Reframe peoples understanding of mistakes and failure i.e. no such thing as failure only feedback and we can learn from our mistakes
  15. Help people to understand that all behaviour has positive intention
  16. Educate people on the mindset that promotes blame
  17. Reinforce the behaviour you want by thanking people for bringing and revealing problems early and finding solutions to those problems
  18. Balance Responsibility
  19. Help people to understand the consequences of their actions
  20. Make responsibility an attractive proposition

Can you think of some more?  I’d love to hear your experience of how you turned around a blame culture in your organisation.

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About the author

Mark Buchan

Mark is an Agile Consultant and Executive Coach who specialises in working with leadership teams when they are transforming their organisation to a more Agile way of delivery.

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