Do you ever feel like you’re the only one with a sense of accountability for the success of your business? That’s okay—even the most successful business owners have felt that way. The good news is that you have the power to improve accountability in your small business by creating a culture that holds people accountable.
Read on to learn how to create accountability in team culture to produce greater business results.
- Unaccountable business leaders create a culture of frustration, inefficiency, and preventable mistakes.
- When leaders create a culture of accountability, employees take ownership of their actions and look for solutions to business problems.
- Signs of an unaccountable employee include forgetting project deadlines or statuses, letting tasks fall through the cracks, making excuses for mistakes, and under-communicating.
- Tips for improving accountability include setting expectations, developing performance goals, having accountability conversations, and involving your team.
Improving accountability is the fastest way for your small business to produce profit and inspire results.
The Importance of Improving Accountability in Your Small Business
When working with business owners, business coaches often see leaders, whole teams, or individual managers who aren’t accountable, but what happens when unaccountable employees are operating a business?
- Employees are frustrated.
- Delegation isn’t happening efficiently.
- Customers are dissatisfied.
- Team members make costly mistakes.
As you can see, a lack of accountability in even one team member debilitates the whole organization.
Let’s compare the above consequences to an organization where accountability is established:
- Every person is saying things like, “it’s on me,” “I blew it,” and “that’s my responsibility.”
- Employees are staying late or coming in early during critical times.
- Team members are reporting problems with solutions vs. just reporting problems.
- Your team is making specific commitments and delivering on them.
Improving accountability in your small business is the fastest way to produce profit and inspire results, but before finding ways to boost accountability in the workplace, there are a few key indicators that determine you need to start holding your team more accountable.
Signs You Need To Hold Your Team Accountable
If you think your employees might be letting go of accountability, here are some behaviors you might observe:
- Taking vacation during critical, time-sensitive projects
- Leaving early or coming in late
- Being unaware of deadlines or project statuses
- Giving excuses for lack of productivity or quality problems
- Not being as creative
- Not dotting all the i’s
- Not following up quickly or frequently enough
- Not communicating with their employees, peers, or with you enough
- Making vague vs. specific commitments
Tips for Creating Accountability in Your Team’s Culture
Improving accountability in your small business starts with creating a culture that holds people accountable. Below are some tips for creating accountability in your team’s culture:
Set Expectations With Your Team
Creating accountability in your team culture starts with being specific about what the expectations are—or who’s doing what by when. You can improve accountability by setting expectations with your team and ensuring that each member understands their responsibilities and tasks.
Set Performance Goals and Establish a Reporting Routine
Setting performance goals and establishing a reporting routine against them helps create accountability in your team culture by keeping your employees on track and aware of their performance. Make accountability reporting a part of your team meeting and your meetings with individuals and do it weekly or every other week. Use your 90-day action plan as your planning tool, then use it in your weekly meetings to make sure people are on track.
Have Accountability Conversations
Hold accountability conversations if needed. If you determine that it’s necessary to have a conversation with an individual about their lack of accountability, make sure to speak in private.
Don’t address the issue in front of others or involve an entire group when it’s an individual’s problem. If your team member becomes defensive, step out of the conversation and rebuild a sense of respect.
Involve Your Team
The best sense of accountability comes from peers and co-workers. Involving your team in improving accountability works to your advantage because there’s a lot more of them and only one of you. However, peers and co-workers are usually reluctant to give one another feedback. So how do you encourage accountability among your team?
Start by establishing an atmosphere of trust and caring that encourages constructive feedback by letting team members know that it’s okay to take risks and make mistakes. Promote a sense of responsibility among team members for holding others accountable, and give your staff as much ownership over their projects and objectives as possible. Finally, encourage team members to communicate with each other directly instead of to you, training them on the importance of providing constructive feedback. Teach them how to be positive and encouraging in their comments, while still being direct and factual in their feedback.
Did you know that world-renowned leaders say that business coaching is worth it, from Bill Gates to Oprah Winfrey?
Superior Business Coaching Solutions for Improving Accountability
Creating a culture of accountability is not a small task, but if you truly want to hold people accountable, it’s the only way to do so—but you don’t have to do it alone. At Inspire Results Business Coaching, our experienced professionals can help you create a plan to improve accountability with our Single Sheet Business Plan. This simple, one-page sheet is a powerful tool that helps you edit your vision and strategy down to one, action-oriented page that focuses on four critical business decisions that are crucial for your success:
With our plan and professional coaching services, you can create accountability in your team’s culture. Contact us today to learn more about our superior business coaching solutions that help improve accountability.