While entrepreneurs are my kinda people, I find (so) many of them struggle to be impeccable with their word.
I find that, despite the best of intentions, they often over-commit, say they’ll do things…but don’t, promise they’ll complete something…but won’t, offer deadlines that pass…without mention, set expectations…but don’t follow through, and drop commitments…simply because they forget.
Sporadic, inconsistent fulfillment of promises and offers means we become less trustworthy, and less reliable to those we love, care about, and who support us.
HERE’S HOW I WORK TO STAY IMPECCABLE WITH MY WORD
1) A SIMPLE REMINDER SYSTEM
Let’s say I finish a call with Joe and promise to follow up next Thursday.
The moment the call ends, I IMMEDIATELY email a reminder to my to-do list that shows up next Thursday that reads “Follow up with Joe today.”
In other words, my promises get entered into my task list for the specific days I plan to complete them. Whether I promise to complete a form, pay a fee, make a call, or review a team member’s work, the MOMENT a commitment is made (and I make commitments with due-by-dates to ensure they’re real), it gets shot over to my to-do list (I use Toodledo) for the day I need to begin working on it.
There’s no way I could remember all my commitments, so my to-do list tracks them for me. I review the upcoming week each morning and make adjustments as necessary. This one habit ensures I don’t drop the ball on others or myself after I make commitments.
2) NOT SAYING YES TO BEGIN WITH
I don’t say Yes unless I KNOW I have the time, energy, and interest to complete something. I say no to a LOT.
I make sure I don’t tell someone I’ll call them back during the week unless I KNOW I will. I don’t promise I’ll finish an assignment by a certain date unless I’m certain I have the time. I don’t commit or make promises unless I’m confident I can make them happen.
If part of me thinks “Well, I’ll TRY…” — I know I’m not fully committed. A drastic reduction in what you say Yes to allows you to be someone who’s impeccable with her word.
Being impeccable with your word does NOT mean being perfect. It also does NOT mean being rigid.
Life happens, schedules change, urgent issues flare up. People who are impeccable with their word have to change their schedules and priorities often, just like the rest of the world. The difference is, they take into consideration how their commitments and the expectations they set impact others, and let others know.
Give a heads up, check in with others, reschedule with advance notice when possible — simply bring awareness of how changes you make to your commitments may impact others.
If you’re already impeccable with your word, THANK YOU.
Thank you for making it easy to trust you, fully.
Thank you for having a positive ripple effect out into the world.
If you’re not quite there yet, I hope what I shared above helps cultivate a new way of living in even more integrity.
When you're tired of getting in your own way, and you know you're capable of SO much more, it's time to talk to us.