"The price of greatness is responsibility." ~Winston Churchill
The following matrix describes four type of approaches towards responsibility, depending on two personal orientations (axes):
- Action or inaction – represents a person’s preference towards doing things (action) or not doing things (inaction)
- Internal or external locus of control. The locus of control represents a person’s belief as to who controls one’s destiny. Persons with internal locus of control believe that they determine, in a significant proportion, the outcome of their actions/inactions, while persons with external locus of control believe that external factors (other people, organizations, divinity, and so on) determine, in a significant proportion, the outcome of their actions/inactions.
The four resulting quadrants are not good or bad, they are simply configurations of personal preferences. A person will most probably identify familiar traits in one of the quadrants, for the majority of the person’s approaches towards responsibility and commitment, and could also identify instances when he/she positions into all other three quadrants.
The characteristics that were analyzed for each personal orientation (quadrant) are:
- Responsibility – what a person does when confronted with the prospect of new responsibilities
- Commitment – what a person does after assuming/accepting new responsibilities
- Conflicting commitments – what a person does when confronted with conflicting commitments (conflicting commitments = commitments that draw upon the same pool of resources and somehow impede each other)
Why is it relevant to consider our attitude towards responsibilities and commitments?
How do these attitudes affect ourselves and others?
Do we help our objectives, or rather hinder them, by displaying these attitudes?
And, most important, how aware are we of our attitudes towards responsibilities and commitments?
I invite you to think about it!