Human Performance and Achievement Resources
red line
Home Articles & Publications Directories Link Directories Topics Directory Search
Article: Keep Your Promises Related Resources

Problem-Solving Success Tip: Keep Your Promises
by Jeanne Sawyer

Meet your commitments. Do what you promise and don't promise what you can't deliver. Meeting commitments strengthens relationships and builds trust. You need both to solve messy problems. If the situation changes and you have to change a commitment you made in good faith, let everyone know right away so they can make appropriate changes to their own plans. It seems obvious, but many people don't manage to do this.

Managing your commitments successfully means you must be organized yourself, which brings us back to project management--with you being the overall project. That means you'll need to write down all your specific projects, identify tasks, set priorities and keep track of progress and due dates. Each time you consider a new assignment, start by estimating the resources needed (mainly your time) and make sure you've got what you need. Don't accept the assignment if you don't have the resources necessary. If the new assignment is more important than some of your current projects, then get the priorities and expectations adjusted by making explicit agreements with the stakeholders in the projects getting pushed back.

Like any project, of course, you'll need to keep updating your project plan so that it reflects accurately everything you're working on. You'll be able to tell more easily if you can accept a new commitment, and if anything starts slipping, you're in a position both to recognize that it's happening and also to do something about it.

Copyright 2007. Jeanne Sawyer. All Rights Reserved.

Jeanne Sawyer is an author, consultant, trainer and coach who helps her clients solve expensive, chronic problems, such as those that cause operational disruptions and cause customers to take their business elsewhere. These tips are excerpted from her book, When Stuff Happens: A Practical Guide to Solving Problems Permanently. Find out about it, and get more free information on problem solving at her web site:


Home Articles & Publications Directories Link Directories Topics Directory Specialized Interest Directories Performance & Productivity Blog Search

Website and contents ©1997-2011 C.S. Clarke, Ph.D. (Except where otherwise noted. Articles and content from other contributors are copyright to their respective authors.) All rights reserved.