The set-up-to-fail syndrome “is self-fulfilling and self-reinforcing – it is the quintessential vicious circle…” High expectations or low expectations both influence other people’s performance. Only high expectations have a positive impact on actions and on feelings about oneself. Only high expectations can encourage the heart.
James M. Kouzes and Barry Z. Posner, Encouraging the Heart: A Leaders Guide to Rewarding and Encouraging Others
We undermine so very much. We undermine ourselves; we undermine our people. I wonder, at times, if we undermine our country.
If we “set-up-to-fail,” then failure is an ever-greater possibility. If we set-up-to-succeed, then success is an ever-greater possibility.
Maybe it is this simple: we get what we aim for. But, “aiming for” requires specific actions; steps to follow.
And, there are steps we can take, steps we have to take, to set-up-to-succeed. We have to set the example, provide plenty of good training, and feedback, and encouragement (we have to “encourage the heart”). If we do not provide the training, the feedback, the encouragement – to ourselves; to others – we are setting-up-to-fail.
And if we set-up-to-fail, there is a pretty good possibility that we will fail.
So, here’s our new assignment – in every endeavor, in every new initiative, let’s get serious about setting-up-to-succeed.