How Making S#!t Up impacts on Leadership

MSUStop Making S#!t Up:  Become a better Leader & improve communication.

Think about all the people you talk to in the course of your day and you will come across it. You can hear at work, in meetings, around the water cooler, in the media, at your local pub, in the stands during sports events, and around the table at holiday get togethers when Uncle Albert tells one of his famous stories.

Making S#!t Up is about sharing our perception of what we see and hear.  Let me say that just because we make s#!t up, doesn’t mean we are lying. This is a misconception. Making s#!t up is really about saying things that are interpretations, opinions, embellishments, and conjecture. Though outright lying could be included under our definition, you can make it up without lying, but you can’t lie without making it up.

Some of the Ways We Make S#!t Up

Tim, a store manager of a national retail tire chain, was tired of employees not following through with their commitments. He knew that if he was going to change behaviour within his store, he would first have to catch himself when he himself made it up. Tim’s own natural way of making s#!t up was Quick Answers:  committing to things without really exploring whether he could follow-through at the time or not. In other words, saying yes too quickly when he meant to say: “not now - but later.” This behaviour put a strain on the respect staff had for him, and in turn made it difficult for them to commit to him. Why should they? It also had an impact on Tim’s confidence since he was always trying to catch up because he would end up having to follow-through with his requests on his own.

By learning to keep to his own commitments, Tim noticed people began to listen to him more because they would take what he said seriously. As a leader grows, people around him will also change. They didn’t just nod their head in agreement and get on with their day – aka:  Half-truths and Little White Lies, but Tim could tell by their faces that they had actually heard him. He noticed projects getting completed, follow-through on activities, and generally a better feeling around the store. As a result, over time he was able to identify strong candidates for more responsibility, which made it easier to delegate, and freeing up his time.

“Making S#!t Up” is a fun way to discuss communication, and it can have a profound impact on building an empowered culture within an organization.

To find out about all of 6 Ways We Make S#!t Up, and which are the common ones your organization might be using, visit

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