Behaviors to Eliminate

Marshall Goldsmith, author of What got you Here Won’t Get you There, has a list of 20 behaviors that he thinks leaders should get rid of. He refers to them as transactional flaws, things that get in the way of others’ ability to trust, get close to or follow us as leaders.

I will present them as I often present great, thought-provoking concepts – with questions you can ask yourself to do some self-coaching.

  1. Winning too much: Who stands to lose when you have to win at all costs?
  2. Adding too much value: Does your expertise allow others to grow and learn?
  3. Passing judgment: Are your standards the only ones that work?
  4. Making destructive comments: Does your sharp wit cut ties?
  5. Starting with “No”, “But”, or “However”: Do you have to make your point stick?
  6. Telling the world how smart you are: Who do you need to impress?
  7. Speaking when angry: Can you take a breath first?
  8. Negativity, or “let me explain why that won’t work”: Is your business going to grow if you are the only one with bright ideas?
  9. Withholding information: Does that really give you the advantage you want?
  10. Failing to give proper recognition: What are the benefits of putting the spotlight on someone else’s accomplishments?
  11. Claiming credit that we don’t deserve: Can you be happy that someone else in the organization is as clever/creative as you?
  12.  Making excuses: How does this benefit your position if at all?
  13. Clinging to the past: Isn’t this just another way of blaming?
  14. Playing favorites: Aren’t your favorites just lying to keep you happy?
  15.  Refusing to express regret: How hard is it for you to admit that you are wrong?
  16.  Not listening: Is your not listening a way to be passive-aggressive?
  17.  Failing to express gratitude: Will others continue to do things well if you don’t?
  18.  Punishing the messenger: How quickly can you put things into perspective and control your anger?
  19.  Passing the buck: How can you take the blame graciously?
  20.  An excessive need to be “me”: Do you expect others to accept your faults and your boasting about them?


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