Lesson #45 – Commitment vs. Compliance

–Leaders generate true commitment in those around them, instead of compliance

Leaders generate true commitment in those around them, instead of compliance. A key principle for leaders– whether in sales, parenting, management, or community action–is distinguishing commitment vs. compliance.

Compliance is the mindset when people do something merely because they feel they have to. Many employees go to work out of compliance. Children often attend school or keep a curfew out of compliance. People will serve on school boards or be in a marriage out of compliance.

Think about one area you are in compliance. Don’t brush this off. Everyone has an area like that. What is your experience of compliance? It’s probably tiring, there is no passion, and you produce minimal results.

Commitment is where you have totally surrendered to a choice you have made. Name one area of your life or one thing where you have given up any thoughts other than doing it. You are totally committed.

What is your experience of commitment? It may require a lot of work, but it is fun, energizing, and you produce maximum results. You feel bulletproof.

If you are in a network marketing team selling and have trouble duplicating, it is because your people are compliant, not committed. If you are in any job and your department is not producing, it is because they are in compliance.

How do you generate commitment in people vs. compliance?

You find out what’s in it for them. When people are clear about what’s in it for them, they will be committed.

Move yourself and others into commitment from the compliance by finding out what’s in it for them.

Action Step #1

Identify people in your life that you feel are in compliance with you. Have a conversation with them about what they are experiencing. Now, have an open conversation about what’s in it for them should they produce the result you want.

Action Step #2

Find an area of your life that is flat–has no energy. Take a half-hour to dig down into what is really in it for you by doing it. Take another half-hour brainstorming with someone not attached to the outcome as to what could be in it for you.

An Example

Jay, the chairman of the board of one of our corporate clients, had taken both our Personal Mastery and Advanced Leadership seminars. He was about to start our executive coaching program.

To make the initial meeting with his fellow executives he was going to have to get up at 5 am. He noticed that he was not excited about getting up so early. He already saw himself as tired, and was silently grumbling about the earliness of the meeting.

He noticed the unpleasant experience he was creating for himself as a sign of compliance.

Jay then started to examine why he had decided to do the coaching program in the first place. He saw that what was in it for him was setting an example for his fellow executives by showing up totally committed. And he saw the other executives getting full value out of the program, as well as what would happen with creating a context in the corporation of commitment versus compliance.

He showed up at the early morning meeting with a great attitude and was so impressed with the results that he called our marketing director, Steve Hinton, and shared what had happened.

Compliance can happen to the best of us and we all can move ourselves to commitment. The event was the same for Jay, but the experience was vastly different.

“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, the providence moves too. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents, meetings and mate-rial assistance, which no man could have dreamt would have come his way.’
–William Murray

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