Human Capital Management

Accountability: Will You Own the Good and the Bad?

/ April 11, 2023 April 11, 2023


In today’s world of all different work conditions, it’s hard to manage a remote team. Everyone in every level of the organization needs to own accountability. Accountability can also be described by responsibility, liability, and culpability. Will you own the good and the bad? Will you own achieving the outcomes you’ve set out to achieve?

As leaders we must lead by example. We have to hold ourselves accountable before we can hold our teams accountable. So, what does accountability really look like? Here are 5 steps to follow for yourself and your team. It’s important to note that during any moments we go off track or fail on our outcomes, we are being resilient. We are open to pivot. We are open to learning. We take action to move to the next step.

  1. Understand Expectations
    • What does good look like?
    • What are the consequences if you don’t get the results expected?
    • What is the time frame in which results should happen?
  2. Always Have a Plan
    • What if things aren’t going well?
    • Be open to pivots.
    • Don’t let failure derail you.
    • Be resilient.
  3. Clearly Communicate Progress
    • Don’t wait until the end to share what’s working/not working and how it’s trending.
    • Are you on track?
    • What are the milestones to measure performance and success?
    • Who needs to know?
  4. Be Open to Feedback
    • Be self-aware.
    • Recognize other’s perceptions.
    • What can I do differently to improve the chance of success?
    • What can the team do differently?
    • Celebrate what’s working!
  5. Learn From & Own the Results (Good or Bad)
    • Take action to course correct on any negative results proactively.
    • Learn from missteps and take immediate action.
    • Own the good and the bad.
    • Build/expand positive results.
    • Address the negative.

The key is to have a clear understanding of where you want to go, where you’re currently at and where you ended up along the way. There are lessons to be learned whether it was a successful outcome or not so successful. Apply those lessons learned and build upon them. Each of us at every level have to be comfortable holding ourselves accountable to the commitments we’ve made and the tasks we’ve taken on to help move the team forward. A high achieving team will have individuals holding themselves accountable throughout the lifecycle of the project, as well as peers and leaders making sure each person delivers on those assignments. If you have trouble holding yourself accountable, seek out an accountability partner. You just have to make the commitment to do your part, and to the best that you can. Make sure you understand what you’re trying to achieve, have a plan on how to get there, communicate along the way, take in feedback, and learn (and own) the results.

It can be hard to hold yourself accountable as well as manage hybrid and remote teams. Gone are the days where you can walk over to someone’s desk and ask for an update or ask for help.  Think about other ways of how you can do that. Schedule check in meetings, create a shared spreadsheet with delivery dates and ownership by task, eliminate using vague timelines like ASAP, soon, almost. Be very clear when something is needed, and which person has to take that task to the finish line. Make sure each team member sees where they fit into the project and the impact they have if they miss their piece or turn it in late.

At Exude Human Capital we offer coaching and training programs that can help you with these challenges. We can create what works best to help you and your team achieve those desired results and become a high performing team that prioritizes accountability.

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