Standing Up For Your Partners

As is the case with any service company, we have to wait on files and information from our clients regularly before we can complete their project. This morning, in two such cases, both clients of ours blamed their partner for the delays. Something along the lines of “they didn’t get me the file”, “they screwed up and gave you the wrong information”, or “that decision they made makes no sense”. One even bashed their partner three times in a four sentence email! It might not seem like a big deal, but those businesses are in trouble big time. I would never, ever, ever throw my partners under the bus like that.

Any time WE screw up I tell the client or customer that it was OUR fault and WE apologize and WE will fix it. We are a team, we all make mistakes, and if someone screws up repeatedly we’ll deal with it internally, but I know I’ll never disclose that to a client. I know I would be pissed if one of my partners was ripping me to a client. As far as I’m concerned, if something slips past our internal checks and balances it’s the fault of our entire team and not the individual.

Bashing your partners tells me that you resent each other and you don’t want to be associated with each other’s mistakes. It also shows a sign of immaturity that you’re unable to solve problems face to face and instead vent to other people to make you feel better. That’s the anti-team, and those partnerships will likely fall apart.