5 Steps to Accountability (yours and your teams)
Stop the recycling pattern!
Have you ever worked in a business where there is zero accountability?
Often I talk to business owners, parents and even in personal conversations about how there is a pattern of lack of accountability.
What happens when there is zero accountability in the workplace, or even at home?
Accountability is one of the most important elements of a high functioning workplace and home life. Not only does accountability increase productivity, but it also is linked to higher performance and employee morale. When we let accountability slip at home, we often find ourselves resentful and unhappy with our kids, husband or wife, without any real prospects for change.
So how do you hold yourself and others accountable and feel okay about it?
5 Key Points
1) Do what you say you are going to do. People will value you more if you hold yourself accountable for your actions and help them to be accountable for theirs. Sometimes it may feel uncomfortable for them to hear the truth. However, when we hold ourselves accountable and actually do what we say we are going to do, we establish healthier and more productive relationships.
2) Always set up boundaries. Do you find yourself feeling frustrated at home or in the workplace because your team keeps making mistakes? Rather than telling them off or making them feel as though they have done something wrong, ask yourself- Have you allowed ample opportunity for them to learn how to get it right? As a leader, it’s your responsibility to set healthy boundaries and to offer guidance when needed.
3) Ask the right questions. First of all, check in with your team. Ask them- Is there anything that you need from me? Find out if there is anything they need from you in order to do the job. This sets a level of accountability in the workplace and opens up an opportunity for your team to disclose anything that may be preventing them from doing their job.
4) Set time frames and check in with your team. Have you set clear time frames of when you expect something to be due by? Once you have established a timeline, confirm it with your team. Sometimes we set deadlines without checking in to see if it is even possible. A simple check-in of “Can you have this done by this date?” allows your team to give you the heads up on how the project is going. If they aren’t going to get something done on time, then they need to let you know sooner rather than later. When our team is accountable, it means they won’t show up to appointments or meetings without the work done.
5) Follow through! If your team continues to be late or if they are not doing what needs to be done or if they have come to the meeting unprepared, then you need to be ready to follow through with your accountability. What response are you going to give? How are you going to deal with this? If you decide to let it slip or you decide not to address the situation, then you are failing to hold them accountable for their actions. And they will continue to do it! The same applies to your clients; they need to know that it’s not okay to always be late. For example, if you have a client booked in for a half an hour appointment and they are 15min late, then you need to hold them accountable. It’s okay to say, “I understand that things happen, life happens; however, we are only going to be able to have a 15min appointment today”. For the first time offenders, charge them for the 15min. Second-time offenders, charge them for the full 30 min. Your time and your business are just as valuable and important as your clients time.
People will do what they do because you let them and It’s important to stop feeling guilty or fearful in the process of setting your boundaries.
Being accountable to your team, clients and family will help build stronger relationships and respect within your relationships.
Do you have great intentions but then struggle to hold your team accountable?
and together let us identify the key markers to assist you to become more accountable in your workplace for success and smooth sailing!