Implementing Accountability in Your Organization II

OK, now you know that you don’t have the accountable organization that you need. How do you build company-wide accountability?

As Oswald Viva explains in his SkillBite entitled Accountability in the Workplace, you need to start by changing or eliminating practices that undermine accountability, such as micromanaging and legislating the how’s and what’s and other activities not conducive to what you want to establish. Then start working on team development; eliminate person-to-person competition and promote person-to-person assistance.

Follow these steps for creating a culture of commitment and accountability:

Make exceptionally clear that accountability and commitment are a requirement of the organization and how their individual contributions matter.

Align every job description to your company’s strategy and goals. Ask everyone to commit to a shared vision of results.

Develop goals in alignment with the strategic plan. These goals should have metrics and timelines associated with them, they should be clearly articulated, and they should have specific persons or teams responsible for meeting them.

Encourage employees to communicate obstacles and request the help or resources they need to achieve their goals.

Motivate employees to identify process improvements or otherwise increase the quality and productivity of their work.

“Catch” people doing something right; give frequent, honest and positive feedback. Recognize and acknowledge employees when their actions exemplify an “above and beyond” commitment to company objectives.

You must set clearly defined results. These can be sales numbers, profit levels, ROI, positioning in the industry or any other goal that is part of the strategic plan. Once these goals are set, make sure that the entire organization is clear in what the goals mean for the organization’s success and how each employee can affect the goals. Now develop measurements for each employee or department, and implement joint accountability.

Joint accountability means that even if individuals have met their goals but the team hasn’t, accountability has not been reached. Individual success does not necessarily transmit to group success. Granted, individual accountability must be a reality before joint accountability can be reached, but you must promote both if you are to win the accountability battle.

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