They didn’t listen.
They didn’t understand.
They are too set in their ways.
They are too persuaded by that one person.
They don’t trust me enough.
They don’t share my vision.
They don’t know what I know.
They aren’t willing to go out on a limb with me.
Yes, it’s possible that the world would be a better place if everyone just listened to you and did what you thought was best. Each and every time. Forever.
Or it’s possible that you’re ready to step up to a different yardstick, one in which you set aside excuses and start trafficking in results.
Because those you aim to serve don’t care who’s to blame, they care about what you are able to do, about what your organization provides to them and whether it makes a real difference in their lives.
Maybe, just maybe, you’re ready to start asking “I” questions: how could I have been more persuasive, more engaging, more understanding, or more supportive? How could I have partnered better, listened more deeply, made it safer to take that risk, told a better story, gone above and beyond a bit more? What am I not willing to do, what beliefs and values and stories am I not willing to let go of, in service of our work?
Oh, and lest we forget, to everyone else, each of us is just another “they.”