For god’s sake buck up! Take responsibility for all that you do. Everything! You may think that this is going to be a rant post; maybe a little, but not too much. Read on good reader.
In my rather vast experience in business, I have seen many times individuals who do not take responsibility for what they do. Sometimes this is because they are afraid that they will get in trouble, maybe even lose their job. In most cases no one is in jeopardy of losing anything except some humility perhaps.
Successful people take responsibility for all that they do, good and bad. Entrepreneurs not only take responsibility, they take credit. Yes, taking credit is a part of responsibility. I admit that all the images I capture are mine. I don’t steal them from anywhere, I don’t copy other photographers, I may however be influenced by some. I also take credit for my faults and mistakes.
One of the reasons I left the corporate world to take up photography full time was a matter of taking responsibility. It is a long (and very boring) story but suffice it to say I took responsibility for interpreted actions and by doing the right thing I was able to walk away from the corporate world.
I am not saying that I did the right thing every time. I have made my fair share of mistakes in my career. I have made mistakes that have cost me money and I have made decisions that have made the company and me a lot of money too. The fact is, though, that I take responsibility for all the decisions I make good or bad. I also make sure that I do everything I say I will do and I work the way I agree to work.
My clients quite often say that they need X amount of images. If that’s 15 images I always deliver at least 20, sometimes twice that. I try to over-deliver whenever possible. My goal is to give my clients more; more of what they want. I am not perfect. Sometimes I miss the target and I admit my failure. In photography that means I have to reshoot and at no cost to my client. I can honestly say though that whenever I have taken on a project I have always succeeded in delivering in the long run.
My overall point is that no matter what goals you set for yourself: own them. Drive yourself toward them and make sure you do your best to reach the goal. When you do something with all you are, when you give everything you have, at the end you are guaranteed a reward. That reward is pride.
Taking responsibility for all that you do is where to start and where to finish. After that success or failure are the same. We learn from either, and from both, but if we don’t take responsibility we fail to learn.