Fundamental of the Week #12: Be Accountable

Be Accountable image

Act like you are an owner in the company. Ownership accountability means holding yourself to account, holding others to account, and the willingness to be held to account.

According to Wikipedia: “accountability is the acknowledgment and assumption of responsibility for actions, products, decisions, and policies including the administration, governance, and implementation within the scope of the role or employment position and encompassing the obligation to report, explain and be answerable for resulting consequences.”

In a high performing culture this definition expands to include being accountable for our results and for our impact on people in how we get our job done. Moreover, it involves having an enterprise-wide perspective in doing our work. What is best for our particular area or for us may not always be best for the organization.

For nearly every organization, getting things done requires operating within a network of people. How I perform each day within my network impacts others. This level of accountability is also what keeps me out of a victimization mind-set and supports my ability to hold others accountable for their results and their impact on me as well as their impact on others.

One approach is to consider there are only two places one can operate from: victimization or accountability. From which place I stand will determine the level of my productivity and my happiness as well. To carry this a step further, I have some accountability in everything that happens to me. I may not have a say in “what happens,” but I always have a say in how I respond.

Victor Frankl spoke of this kind of ownership in his extraordinary book, Mans’ Search for Meaning:

“Between stimulus and response, there is a space.
In that space is our power to choose our response.
In our response lies our growth and our freedom.”

Being accountable or being a victim is a choice; neither is right nor wrong. Each choice just gives a different result. If you don’t like the results you’re getting you may want to make a different choice.

When I am fully accountable, I will always find a way, and that’s my topic for next week!

Craig Clark