Just like a good golf swing, we should always follow through to the end!
When I was interviewing PD Managers for my latest book, The Strategic Host, I was struck by how often the PD managers emphasized this point.
Here’s a typical example of a quote:
“As a player’s host, you are his ‘inside man.’ You should be able to get him a room or dinner reservations or show tickets or registration for a tournament or other event without him having to do more than ask you to take care of it. Afterward, relentless follow-up is required. Always return a guest’s call as soon as humanly possible and always do what you say you will do. If you’re making reservations, call back with a confirmation that the task is complete, no matter whether the reservation is for today or in three weeks.”
You might enjoy reading the book Seven Habits of Effective People. The author, Stephen Covey, uses the metaphor of an Emotional Bank Account to describe “the amount of trust that’s been built up in a relationship”.
Simply put, if I do five favors for my neighbors then I have made five deposits in my emotional bank account with them. If I mess up and reverse into their mailbox, I have to make a large withdrawal! But, if I had never done any favors then I would have gone over-drawn. If you are consistent with your follow-through then your guest will forgive you if you make a mistake.
(The same applies with your manager and your peers. Keep making deposits in those emotional bank accounts and you will have a cushion in your favor for when you make mistakes.)
Follow through! It reduces stress as well because there is never anything left undone for you to worry about.