Stop Whining!

In my day-to-day, I happen across a lot of whining in two main scenarios. One is when I’m with my 3 kids. The other is listening to leaders vent. Only one of these is ok.

And don’t get me wrong, venting can be helpful, but too often it becomes the default and only action taken. I can’t help but cringe when I listen to a CTO describe teams not working well together, or a VP being sarcastic about priorities or the state of the architecture.

It’s one thing to share these personally with a trusted advisor, but these are often not limited to that circle and eventually take place in other, larger forums. From there it seeps down to the rest of the organization, completely unhealthy for everyone involved.

Your individual contributors might be sarcastic. Personally, I’d try to minimize that as a culture thing as well, but let’s put that aside. Your leadership team, and more importantly you yourself, cannot act this way. Not only is it poisonous, it’s also showing a completely incorrect grasp.

Think big. You have so, so many options, of which whining is the least helpful. You’re the boss, you call the shots. Call them. Spend your brain cycles on how to best approach the issues instead of coming up with clever quips. Yes, of course there are things outside of your control, but the right mindset is that those things are minimal. Truly, in all but the largest organizations, things are within your grasp.

I hate sounding like a motivational speaker, but I believe this completely. The executives I see who have a positive mindset towards growth can move mountains. Others… well, they have a hard time with every hill they happen about.