Taking responsibility for your actions can go a long way in avoiding confusion and even eliminating the opportunity for people to talk behind your back.
And here Springbok coach Allister Coetzee can take a leaf out of the Eddie Jones playbook.
The England coach won his game against Argentina this past weekend, but still admitted that he didn’t coach the team well enough in the build-up to the game.
After beating Argentina 21-8, Jones told journalists: “I didn’t coach them well enough.
“You [the media] are always looking for people to blame, so I’m telling you blame me.
“It is my fault that the team did not play well and I take responsibility for that.
“I didn’t coach them well enough.
“We try to think about all the contingencies, try to get the players in the right mental state and sometimes it doesn’t work.
“I’m disappointed in the way we coached.”
Coetzee, meanwhile, who suffered yet another record defeat – this time to Ireland, losing 38-3, blamed the ill-discipline of his players.
Ignoring his lack of a Plan B, his persistence with out-of-form players, Coetzee says: “The crux of the matter is we were ill-disciplined.
“We didn’t realise penalties will hurt you so much, and the three points in the northern hemisphere is almost like a score [try].
“We’ve got to make sure our discipline is intact. We need to have patience.”
England have won 20 of their 21 games under Jones, while the man he replaced at the Stormers, albeit briefly, Coetzee, has only won nine out of 22 matches.
Coetzee is under fire, not only for his on-field results but for the same run-down explanations he is giving Springbok fans for the shortcomings in his team.
If he still wants to be in this position next year, then maybe honesty is the best policy and he should start telling people what the problem really is. The clichés simply don’t cut it anymore.
Otherwise, the Springboks will have a new coach come 2018.