The excuse master employee

If you were ever to start up an excuse store, this is is the employee you would want to have manufacturing your inventory.  He (she) can come up with an excuse for everything.

The best way to recognize him is by his proficiency with the word, “Yabut.” “Yabut, it wasn’t my fault.” “Yabut, I’m really busy.” “Yabut, it’s gunna take a lot of time.” “Yabut, that’s not how it works.” Yabut, yabut, yabut.  If only he was as proficient at his job as he is at yabutting.

It takes time to change the Excuse Master Employee’s behavior, but it can be done.  The strategy is to bring his behavior to his attention – every time – and to encourage him to re-frame his behavior. Here are a couple of examples from Winning with the Employee from Hell a guide to coaching & motivation:


Excuse-Master Employee Example #1

Supervisor:  “Jane, I’d like you to try and resolve some more of these customer complaints without escalating them to a supervisor.”

Jane:  “Yabut, they asked for a supervisor, what am I supposed to do?”

Supervisor:  “There’s another one of those Yabuts again!  I think maybe what you meant to say was, ‘Okay, do you have any suggestions as to what I can do that might work better?'”

Excuse-Master Employee Example #2

Boss:  “Fred, it looks like I’m going to need those reports on Thursday instead of Friday as I originally thought.”

Fred:  “Yabut, I’m already in the middle of three other projects! I can’t just drop everything.”

Boss:  “There’s one of those Yabuts again. Try this: ‘Okay Boss.  I do have some other projects on the go, which ones should take priority?'”


It takes a while, but eventually your message will get through!

Good luck!



“Don’t Confuse Excuses With Solutions”

-Shaun Belding –

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