Never Complain – Never Explain

anxiety-stressLosers are always complaining and explaining.

They’re always looking for reasons and justifications why their sales are in a slump.

It’s just plain lazy.

On the other hand, a winner never complains and never explains. They face the problem, make a clear assessment of the situation, and get something done.

A loser complains and explains to avoid his own insecurities and doubts. Instead of facing what is really going on and what needs to be done, he frantically searches for explanations as to why he is failing, and he or she gets nothing done!

In business – when times are tough – you’ll always hear complaints like, “The economy is slow; things are tight all over; nobody’s buying anything these days.”

The list of explanations is as endless as it is useless. If you’re only looking for reasons to fail – you’ll find ‘em. And you’ll have lots of people agreeing with you, as misery does love company, doesn’t it?

For example, several years ago the owner of a company where sales were seriously down called me in for a consultation and evaluation.

After talking with the president (not the owner) of the company, I found that he had adopted a “solution” of spending most of his time searching through newspapers, magazines and opinions to explain why his sales were slow. His focus was so fixed on blaming others and looking for reasons for failure that he was blind to any other possibilities.

So, I decided to let him tell me all about it to convince me why his sales were down and that nothing could be done.

It was like I had opened Pandora’s box.

Like a fire hose, all the garbage he had collected to convince himself that nothing could be done came rushing out. When he finally wound down, he paused, looked at me hopelessly, and waited for my agreement.

I reflected for a moment and said, “You’re right, it sounds hopeless. But, if everything you’ve said here is true, we’ve got nothing to talk about. I’m sorry, but I can’t help you.”

When I got up to leave, he cried out, “Hey, hey, where are you going? Can’t you see I’m dying here?  I need help!”

I sat back down, saying, “Okay, now we’ve got something to talk about.

This was the turning point. At least now we had a chance, as he wasn’t incapable, just misdirected. He had the “whack on the side of the head” that he was being part of the problem instead of looking for a solution. When he recognized this he immediately snapped back into the driver’s seat.

Simply put, once he stopped complaining and explaining and started doing, we were able to get him going on a program that would handle what needed to be done.

Once he got out-of-the-way of himself and back into action, all the usual business solutions and promotional actions started to bite!  That simple shift of attention made all the difference.

He realized that if he were looking only for “failure support,” he would find it. But nothing else would get done.

However, if he were looking for “success possibilities,” they could, and would be found.

And then he’d get something done that needed doing, now!

This quote by famous American philosopher and author Elbert Hubbard says it best:

Never explain. Your friends don’t need it and your enemies won’t believe you.”

Losers deal in explanations, justifications and complaints.

The executive has to ignore these, and focus on one thing only: ‘get ‘er done!

Which side are you on?

daniel w. jacobs
(c) 2009 – 2030, all rights reserved



One Response to “Never Complain – Never Explain”

  1. Perfect! And I also noticed that a key for your guy was that after giving all his justifications, he actually asked for ‘help’. This is a good part of the formula as well, yes? Thanks for posting the article, Dan!

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