Established, since 1997, leading UK based training provider.

Management Training: Four Feeble Excuses

Management Training: Four Feeble Excuses

Management Training: Four Feeble Excuses

In the past, you've heard it said that; Knowledge is power. But that isn't necessarily so, knowledge is only potential-power.

People don't always do what they know, so knowledge is NOT, necessarily, power.

  • Some people speed on the motorway even though they know they should not.
  • Some people don't do their preparation, even though they know they should.

Question: How can it be that people don't do the things they know they should, and they sometimes do the things that they should not.

Answer: They Rationalise.

Rationalising is the mental habit of coming up with fake reasons, (commonly known as "making feeble excuses"), for not doing the right thing.

People can rationalise practically any action, and thus, make anything, OKAY.

They rationalise that it is okay to park on double yellow lines, because, "I'll only be two minutes". And they can rationalise genocide of a minority population, since, "It is for the Greater Good of the Nation".

Four Rationalisations

Here are the four rationalisations (feeble excuses), that people use to rationalise doing the wrong thing.

We are listing these, not so that you use them - but so that you don't.

Rationalisation 1. Everyone else does it.

People often justify a naughty action by the rationalisation that lots of other people do it. Psychologists call this, social validation.

People speed on the motorway, partly because other people speed on the motorway.

People drop litter partly, because other people drop litter.

Be careful that you don't use the actions of other naughty people to justify (rationalise) your own naughtiness.

Rationalisation 2. Using emotions as a reason.

A rational person does things for a reason. A non-rational person does things for an emotion.

They substitute an emotion for a reason. The emotion becomes a rationalisation. When an emotion is used to explain an action, let your alarm bells ring.

An emotion is a poor excuse for an action.

"I hit him because I was angry".

Even worse, is to blame an action on the emotion and then blame the emotion on someone else.

"I hit him because HE made me angry".

This is double rationalisation. Be careful when you hear this type of language.

Rationalisation 3. Nobody told me.

This is a favourite of teenagers.

"Why did you not empty the bin, that is overflowing onto the kitchen floor?" "Nobody told me to".

"Why did you not empty the washing machine?" "Nobody told me to".

Some teenagers grow up into adults, but they don't grow out of the habit of having NO Personal initiative. They don't do the tasks that obviously need to be done, and when challenged for their omission, they say, "Nobody told me to."

This is a common rationalisation for laziness. Be cautious of the person who uses the phrase, "Nobody told me to."

Rationalisation 4. My little bit won't make much difference.

This is one of the most common rationalisations for doing the wrong thing. "It doesn't matter because my little error won't make much difference, so it is okay."

"My bit of litter won't make much difference, so I'll drop my litter".

"One piece of chocolate won't make me fat, so I'll eat the bar of chocolate".

"One jog around the block won't make me fit, so I won't jog around the block".

The rationalisation amounts to this: "My one little indiscretion won't make any difference, so I will indulge my indiscretion".

This rationalisation fails to take into account the fact that once you do something, you are much more likely to do it again, since you set up a precedent in the mind, which acts as a green light for similar actions in the future.

So be cautious of the person who says, "Go on. A small piece won't make much difference. Go on, try just one."

This person is dangerous.

Especially if it is you.

Summary

A wise person acts on reasons.

A fool acts on rationalisations.

Don't rationalise.

Quiz: How Good Are Your Work Habits?

It is important that you have good work habits because those who DO, make more progress in less time. Discover exactly how good YOUR work habits are with our quiz: How good are your work habits?

Personal Development Training Personal Development Training Course Logo

Personal Development Training

In order to improve your performance, you may need to develop your personal and professional skills: meaning: skills of communication, planning, prioritisation, motivation and personal confidence. If you want to learn more, then click here for personal development training.

About the Author: Chris Farmer

Chris

Chris Farmer is the founder of the Corporate Coach Group and has many years’ experience in training leaders and managers, in both the public and private sectors, to achieve their organisational goals, especially during tough economic times. He is also well aware of the disciplines and problems associated with running a business.

Over the years, Chris has designed and delivered thousands of training programmes and has coached and motivated many management teams, groups and individuals. His training programmes are both structured and clear, designed to help delegates organise their thinking and, wherever necessary, to improve their techniques and skills.

Blogs by Email

Do you want to receive an email whenever we post a new blog? The blogs contain article 5-10 minutes long - ideal for reading during your coffee break!

Further Reading in Leadership and Management

  • Common Characteristics of Leadership and Management
    Leaders and managers share some common characteristics It is these characteristics that mark them out as leaders and managers. Two of these distinguishing characteristics are: 1. T...
    Read Article >
  • Essential Leadership Skills
    Failure to master any one of these leadership skills, results in less-than-the-best team performance.
    Read Article >
  • How to Improve Your Leadership Skills
    A leader requires certain key skills to be effective. Good leaders, however, are always developing and honing their leadership skills. They are committed to be the best and to bring out the best in other people, in order to achieve their goals.
    Read Article >
  • Management training course
    Management Training Course Management training is important because managing tasks and managing people, is itself, a difficult task. Good management skills are difficult to develop. If you can find a person who has developed all the major management skills to a high degree, then you have found a person who is...
    Read Article >
  • Three Advanced Leadership Skills
    When your plans are thrown off course, how do you react? Do you complain or take advantage of the change in circumstances? Take your leadership to the next level by mastering the skills of utilisation, adaptability and creativity.
    Read Article >

Looking for Leadership and Management Training?

If you're looking to develop your Leadership and Management Skills, you may find this Leadership and Management Training Course beneficial:

Open Training Course Pricing and Availability

13 - 14 December
Online - Teams
£875 +VAT
19 - 20 January
London - Central
£875 +VAT
24 - 25 January
Online - Teams
£875 +VAT
26 - 27 January
Manchester City
£875 +VAT
More dates and locations available
Save £100 on this course

Next Open Course Starts in 6 days, Online - Teams, places available Book Now >