accountable

It’s no secret that Entrepreneurial businesses LOVE and NEED their employees to be Accountable.   But what if you could turn that “I’ll do what you ask me to do” accountability into Irresistible Accountability?  With employees that ask, “What’s next? What’s best for the company? What else can I do that makes a difference?”
I’ve gathered 3 of my “biggest bang for your buck” tools here… enjoy!
  • Help them see the bigger picture by clearly communicating expectations that MATTER – It’s been my experience that 90% of all accountability issues stem from NOT having clear expectations set for the employee.   To create clarity, the expectations must be in writing, used and referred to often.   The following are some effective tools I use with clients to assist with this.
    • We create an Accountability Chart – Like an Org Chart – but on steroids, this chart lists the five major roles of the function along with the name and title.  EVERYONE in the business knows what EVERYONE else is responsible for and can see, at a glance, how their role in the company interacts with all the other roles in the company
    • We all ROCK!  Rocks are 90 day measurable objectives that are created together that support the vision of the Company and the direction of the department.  When everyone in the company is laser focused on a handful of priorities vs. 27, it’s just easier to be more accountable.
    • Core Values are used as the handful of rules that describe desired behaviors in the company.  Printing them on a t shirt or a mug are fun, just not enough.  Using them to hire, fire, review, reward and recognize creates beautiful expectations of desired behavior.
  • Check in regularly… and publicly…  Once a week, ask your people to report quickly to the group if their Rock is “On Track” or “Off Track”.   The human brain loves and thrives in repetition and recognition.   Giving everyone a chance to do this quick reporting task as a group will help them “self-recognize” and “self-correct”.   If a Rock is off track, you’ll be able to coach your employee back on track.   If you never inspect what you expect, chances are, you’ll have low accountability.   Bonus… it just feels crappy to say “off track” to your team each week… you get the point.
  • Engage them – The worst place for a disengaged person to work is in an Entrepreneurial company.  We just DON’T HAVE THE TIME OR ENERGY to deal with what I call “bumps on a log” employees.   One tool I use for engagement is the Issues List.   This turns the “open door” policy on its ear.  When I was younger, I had bosses that were constantly touting their “open door” policy.   They encouraged all of us to come to them with issues or problems.   The problem with their policy is that when someone DID get the courage to speak up, they were shot down or the issue was never addressed/heard of again.   NOTHING HAPPENED WITH THE INFORMATION.   Enter the “Issues List” tool.   This is a shared document (as simple as a white board or GoogleDoc) that employees have access to.  It is the mechanism or tool that the Open Door policy never matured to.  And it gets better!   This is not a complaint department.   It is for barriers, obstacles, ideas and opportunities.   Plus – the manager is not responsible for solving everything, it is done as a Leadership team or department.  When everyone is responsible for populating and solving items on the issues list, their commitment level skyrockets!   Gather the team once a week to solve issues together, engaging them in open, honest communication.
Creating Accountability involves using these and other Leadership and Management abilities, but starting with the three principles above will make Accountability IRRESISTIBLE within your company… imagine walking into THAT office every day!!!