Does anyone remember the comic “Family Circus” and the character “Not me”? Little would we know reading that we would hear similar storylines in the workplace.
Now and then, we will experience “Not part of my job description” or “we are not responsible for that.” Heard all too often when something needs to change right away or when a critical issue occurs. It is something that is not conducive to a fully functioning team. When I say team, I mean organization.
To shift accountability is like a defenseman on a hockey team not willing to get into of the opposing team’s end to help the offence or the offence not helping the defence. We all have a part to play in ensuring the success of the organization, and with good leadership, it should not be an issue to step up and say “my fault.”
To me, that seems to be the biggest issue in accepting accountability is saying those two words. When it happens, and it will happen, we are human; after all, those that are accountable should learn from the issue and work towards it not happening again. With the right leadership, others within the team should step in and help make things better.
The reason? John C. Maxwell’s book “The 21 irrefutable Laws of Leadership,” law number 5 – The Law of Addition. In straightforward terms, this law states that everyone helps everyone, regardless of the level of authority. Build people up, and in turn, you build the organization. Let us look at this law with my Jiu-Jitsu path. As I am writing, I just achieved my black belt this past September. Years and years of learning, training, competing, and sacrifice has gotten me here along with one other thing, helping those around me. See if I just went in throughout my training being selfish and not willing to help the lower belts and to push the higher belts, I would still be where I am, yet I wouldn’t see the real value of the art. My game would be useless against most competitors at my level, since nobody pushed me, take what I taught them and use it against me.
See, like most leaders, I am not concerned about titles. I am happy when I get to see others around me succeed. Yes, I am a Sr. Partner, and I use that title to help as many people as I can. All it means is I can reach more people.
Sorry, everyone, I got a little off-topic and will discuss more leadership in other posts. For now, it is all about accountability. It is something that any organization needs to survive. Missing it, even for a small fraction, creates an environment where there is a lack of trust and no transparency. Over time it will grow like cancer and cause issues.
It is a good thing to stand up and show that you are accountable for your actions. It shows correct leadership skills that will take you far, while also giving you the feeling of fulfillment