Synopses & Reviews
The lack of personal accountability is a problem that has resulted in an epidemic of blame, victim thinking, complaining, and procrastination. No organization—or individual—can successfully compete in the marketplace, achieve goals and objectives, provide outstanding service, engage in exceptional teamwork, or develop people without personal accountability.
John G. Miller believes that the troubles that plague organizations cannot be solved by pointing fingers and blaming others. Rather, the real solutions are found when each of us recognizes the power of personal accountability. In QBQ! The Question Behind the Question®, Miller explains how negative, ill-focused questions like “Why do we have to go through all this change?” and “Who dropped the ball?” represent a lack of personal accountability. Conversely, when we ask better questions—QBQs—such as “What can I do to contribute?” or “How can I help solve the problem?” our lives and our organizations are transformed.
THE QBQ! PROMISEThis remarkable and timely book provides a practical method for putting personal accountability into daily actions, with astonishing results: problems are solved, internal barriers come down, service improves, teams thrive, and people adapt to change more quickly. QBQ! is an invaluable resource for anyone seeking to learn, grow, and change. Using this tool, each of us can add tremendous worth to our organizations and to our lives by eliminating blame, victim-thinking, and procrastination.
QBQ! was written more than a decade ago and has helped countless readers practice personal accountability at work and at home. This version features a new foreword, revisions and new material throughout, and a section of FAQs that the author has received over the years.
"This is a quick but deep book that explores the role of personal accountability in one's work and personal life. In his own work experience, Miller found that many people look for others to blame their problems and conflicts on. He proposes that instead of asking who is to blame for the situation, we should ask, 'What can I do to improve the situation?' Only by being able to ask this 'question behind the question' can we take ownership of the problem and start working toward a solution. Throughout the book, Miller (who has consulted for major corporations with his firm, QBQ, Inc.) recounts real-world situations in customer service, retail sales, personal relationships and the corporate boardroom and the positive and not-so-positive ways they were handled. Each example reinforces the message that personal accountability and ownership of a problem not only leads to a resolution but also lifts people willing to take ownership and action above those looking to play the 'blame game.' From responsibility, says the author, comes leadership and greater career opportunities. In one's personal life, Miller says, ownership of conflict can also lead to enhanced relationships and greater enjoyment of daily life. Agent, Barret Neville. (Sept. 13) Forecast: According to Putnam, this book sold 250,000 copies when Miller self-published it, and Putnam is positioning it as the next Who Moved My Cheese?" Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"The advice here is admirable (e.g., stop procrastinating, change oneself) though hardly revelatory. The brief, breezy chapters crackle with energy, but, as they lack coherence and linear structure, the resultant zap dies out." Library Journal
Who Moved My Cheese?
showed readers how to adapt to change.
Fish! helped raise flagging morale.
Execution guided readers to overcome the inability to get things done.
QBQ! The Question Behind the Question, already a phenomenon in its self-published edition, addresses the most important issue in business and society today: personal accountability.
The lack of personal accountability has resulted in an epidemic of blame, complaining, and procrastination. No organization or individual can achieve goals, compete in the marketplace, fulfill a vision, or develop people and teams without personal accountability.
The solution involves an entirely new approach. We can no longer ask, "Who dropped the ball?" "Why can't they do their work properly?" or "Why do we have to go through all these changes?" Instead, every individual has to ask the question behind the question: "How can I improve this situation?" "What can I contribute?" or "How can I make a difference?"
Succinct, insightful, and practical, QBQ! The Question Behind the Question provides a method for putting personal accountability into daily action, which can bring astonishing results: problems get solved, barriers come down, service improves, teamwork grows, and people adapt to change.
Miller provides a method for putting personal accountability into daily action, which can bring astonishing results: problems get solved, barriers come down, service improves, teamwork grows, and people adapt to change.
Now, more than ever, the absence of personal accountability in our culture is a problem that has led to a proliferation of shunning responsibility, blaming others, and playing the victim. In times of political and social upheaval around the world, it appears that few are immune, as they look to explain-and complain-about the state of our affairs. This remarkable and timeless book gives a practical and inspiring message for putting personal accountability into daily action, with astonishing results.
This is a quick but deep book that explores the role of personal accountability in one's work and personal life. In his own work experience, Miller found that many people look for others to blame their problems and conflicts on. He proposes that instead of asking who is to blame for the situation, we should ask, "What can I do to improve the situation?" Only by being able to ask this "question behind the question" can we take ownership of the problem and start working toward a solution...
How often have we heard complaints like these?
“Why don’t my kids do what I say?”
“Who made the mess in here?”
“When will my teen make better choices?”
These are the kinds of questions that parents ask that lead not only to complaining, but to victim thinking, procrastination, and blaming. The solution: Learn to parent the QBQ® way – and bring personal accountability to life within our families.
Based on the same concepts that have made John Miller’s signature work, QBQ: The Question Behind the Question, an international bestseller over the last decade, Parenting the QBQ Way provides the tool called the QBQ or The Question Behind the Question that will help every parent look behind questions such as “Why won’t my kids listen?” or “When will they do what I ask?” to find better ones—QBQs—like “What can I do differently?” or “How can I improve as a parent?” This simple but challenging concept turns the focus – and responsibility – back to parents and to what they can do to make a difference.
With thoughtful commentary, observation, and advice, illustrated with engaging and memorable anecdotes that are the hallmarks of John Miller’s previous books, Parenting the QBQ Way provides all moms and dads with the means and inspiration to be more effective parents – as well as teach their children how to practice their own brand of personal accountability – to create a happy, healthy family for a lifetime.
About the Author
John G. Miller is the author of Personal Accountability and founder of QBQ, Inc., an organizational development firm dedicated to "Helping Organizations Make Personal Accountability a Core Value." He is a graduate of Cornell University, and has been actively involved in the training and development industry since 1986. He lives in Denver, Colorado, with his wife, Karen, and their seven children.
Table of Contents
Introduction: What Ever Happened to...
1. A Picture of Personal Accountability
2. Making Better Choices
3. QBQ! The Question Behind the Question
4. Don't Ask "Why?"
5. The Victim
6. "Why Is This Happening to Me?"
7. "Why Do We Have to Go Through All This Change?"
8. "Why Don't They Communicate Better?"
9. Don't Ask "When?"
10. Procrastination: The Friend of Failure
11. "When Will We Get More Tools and Better Systems?"
12. "When Are We Going to Hear Something New?"
13. Don't Ask "Who?"
14. A Poor Sailor Blames the Wind
16. Beat the Ref
17. "Who Dropped the Ball?"
19. The Foundation of Teamwork
20. Making Accountability Personal: All QBQs Contain an "I"
21. I Can Only Change Me
22. "He Didn't, I Did"
23. "When Will Others Walk Their Talk?"
24. An Integrity Test
25. The Power of One
26. A QBQ Twist
27. Will the Real Role Models Please Stand Up!
28. Practicing Personal Accountability: All QBQs Focus on Action
29. The Risk of Doing Nothing
30. "Thanks for Shopping at the Home Depot!"
31. Leaders at All Levels
32. The Cornerstone of Leadership
33. Accountability and Boundaries
34. A Great List of Lousy Questions
35. The Spirit of the QBQ
37. We Buy Too Many Books
38. A Final Picture
39. The Motor of Learning
Getting More OUt of the QBQ