All of us at one point have either received someone passing the buck or else we have passed the buck on to someone else. Sound familiar? It should since it happens all the time around us whether we are at work, with family, friends or at school. By the time you realize the buck has been passed to you, you find yourself in a situation, circumstance or problem that you did not initially sign up for. So why does it happen and how do we avoid it? Passing the buck means the person who is passing it to you doesn’t have enough time, has failed to fulfill their initial promise or else they don’t want to deal with the problems and pass it to you so its out their hands and now your problem.
How do we avoid being the one passing the buck to someone else? Here are a few tips that may help you and over time you will be able to identify and make more responsible choices in the future.
Tip#1 Learn to say “no”
Agreeing to be on every committee, working overtime or taking extra projects in school will eventually lead to burnout. Trying to do EVERYTHING half-ass vs. doing a few things above and beyond is noticeable and people will usually remember the negative or poor job you did vs. the outstanding performance on one project.
Tip #2 Know your motives
Before taking on an extra load, know why you are doing it. Is it because you purely want recognition in hope for a promotion or award? Or is it because you are truly passionate about the particular cause and feel that it’s for a good cause? Most likely if your thinking what’s in it for you, the time and commitment will slowly wither away compared to if you stand for whatever the commitment may be, your more likely to put extra effort and feel good knowing you did something good.
Next time you find yourself in a situation where you may end up passing the buck to someone, remember how you feel when it is done to you and learn how to stop being the one always passing the buck.