Do What You Say You’re Going To Do

It seems like a small oversight to you.

You said, “I’m going to send this to you tomorrow.”  You didn’t.

When I next talk with you, you ask me for a favor.  “It would mean so much to me if you would do this for me.  Look for a package in the mail.  When you get it, would you….?”

Surprise, surprise.  I never get it.  It’s like this with you.  In fact, more often than not, you don’t do what you say you’re going to do.

What you don’t realize is that you have this reputation.  You think it’s a careless oversight.  It’s “no big deal,” right?  You focus on the big stuff, and these little promises don’t mean much.  After all, if you try to do everything, you won’t do anything.  You justify your behavior by deluding yourself into thinking you have your priorities straight.

Doing what you say you’re going to do is an element of all successful people. Failing to do what you say you’ll do:

Erodes credibility.  If you don’t do what you say you’re going to do, your credibility decreases.   After each one of your promises, I subconsciously add a question mark to the end of it.

Builds distrust.  Trust is built on small actions, not on the dramatic moments meant for movies.

Limits opportunity.  I’m often asked for advice from people looking for career advancement.  So often it comes down to this:  Do what you say you’ll do.  I’ve seen countless careers derailed because of this.  When your team can’t count on you, everyone knows about it.

“Consistently doing what you say you will do is the foundation of integrity.” -Skip Prichard

“Honor your commitments with integrity.” -Les Brown

“You are what you do, not what you say you will do.” -CG Jung

We are all human.  We make mistakes.  We forget.  We fail.  The point here is to not make this a habit.  If you’re known as someone who doesn’t meet promises and expectations, you will face consequences.  Strive to be someone of your word.  Especially when it’s a “small thing,” make sure you do it.  After all, if you fail at the “little stuff,” no one will trust you with the “big stuff.”


Have you seen this principle in action? When someone consistently does what he or she promises, how does that impact you? You can leave a comment by clicking here.
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