How Accountable Is Your Company? Building Accountability In The Workplace

Accountability. It’s more than a buzzword. It’s a value that can play a powerful role not only in one’s career but in the overall success of your business, whether you’re an owner or a manager. The fact is that accountability can help spur your employees to higher levels of productivity as well as heightened satisfaction with their jobs, which can help boost your company’s bottom line and help you continue to grow. Here’s a closer look at this value and how to develop and promote it.

Recent research shows that the ability to hold employees accountable should be within managers’ authority. Yet four in five managers say they have “limited to no” ability to successfully hold others accountable. Nine in 10 employees agree that their companies need to prioritize the ability to hold staff accountable in an effective way.

A culture of accountability is fostered when the leaders of the company demonstrate the same. That means when a mistake is made, the person responsible admits it, and helps to solve the problem. Sharing what he or she learned and how that knowledge can help prevent similar mistakes is part of being accountable as well.

When you hire, look for people with a similar mindset. Applicants who are willing to admit when they’ve made mistakes and share not only how they addressed them but what they learned from that experience are the kind of people you want to welcome to your organization.

Leaders and managers can also help foster accountability by clearly defining company goals and the expectations of individual employees. When workers understand what they are charged with accomplishing, they are empowered about meeting those expectations. Understanding how their role supports the overall success of their department, and the company as a whole, can also enhance productivity and satisfaction with their work.

This kind of communication should not be one-sided. Talk with employees to make sure that they understand their responsibilities and encourage them to voice concerns and questions. Help them overcome any obstacles to committing to their roles. When they buy in, you’ll be able to count on them to deliver.

A culture of accountability encompasses being open to feedback from all levels of your organization. Companies with open-door policies encourage this kind of feedback, which can strengthen the organization as a whole and encourage team building. The attached resource, Creating A Culture Of Accountability In The Office, describes more about how to do so. Courtesy of Minute7.