This book review is part of a series that covers the topic of Personal Accountability. The Official Guide to Personal Accountability is Jay Fiset. Personal Accountability allows you to move away from a mindset where things happen "to you" in your life without your consent or influence, and embrace your role in the way your life is shaped by moving to a place of true power and freedom.

QBQ! The Question Behind the Question: Practicing Personal Accountability in Work and in Life is a valuable resource for people interested in Personal Accountability, and it is available through and Barnes & Noble.

From Barnes & Noble Editors
Every work team has an unhealthy share of Monday morning quarterbacks. As whispered accusations of "you dropped the ball" accumulate, progress is stifled and cooperation wanes. John G. Miller, the founder of the QBQ organizational development firm, thinks that personal accountability is the answer to pervasive blame-game problems. In this delightfully succinct book, he explains how managers and workers can create a business culture in which everybody walks their talk.

Publishers Weekly
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? Copyright © 2004 Reed Business Information.

Library Journal
A rather simple tool that encourages personal accountability, the QBQ (question behind the question) drives Miller's organizational development firm of the same name. Rephrasing issues is the trick: begin with what or how, personalize with I, and focus on action. Thus, "When will they take care of the problem?" turns into "What can I do?" 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. Occasional lectures and corniness are forgivable; recycling material from Miller's previous Personal Accountability: Powerful and Practical Ideas for You and Your Organization (1999) is not. Stick with the prior title if you have it; otherwise, order on demand. Copyright © 2004 Reed Business Information.

Author's Bio: 

This book review is part of a series that covers the topic of Personal Accountability. The Official Guide to Personal Accountability is Jay Fiset. Jay Fiset is a powerful speaker, a risk-taker, and a leader who reaches his goals by assisting others to achieve theirs. He has over 20,000 hours experience conducting personal development seminars. His company, Personal Best Seminars, is a leading seminar company that provides workshops promoting self awareness and stimulating personal growth. Jay enjoys living life to the fullest. He continually challenges himself and expands his comfort zone by participating in such activities as bungee jumping, sky diving, and fire walking.

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Jay Fiset, the Official Guide to Personal Accountability