Accountability in Leadership
Accountability Begins with You
When you think of holding someone accountable, what comes to mind? If you’re like most people, you think it’s asking the hard questions to make sure that they’re staying on track. For instance, a friend is trying to quit smoking and you’re holding him accountable. Every day at noon and in the evening you call to ask if he has been tempted to light up. You think you’re doing a good job; he thinks you’re holding the paddle of discipline over his head.
Wait, isn’t that what accountability is? Keeping the pressure on so that a friend, colleague, employee, or follower stays the course? To an extent, but those methods are going to breed resentment instead of true change.
Instead, a new approach is needed.
Effective Accountability as a Leader
You have often heard the saying that goes like this: a boss says, “Go!”; a leader says, “Let’s go!” The idea there is that a good leader is out in front showing the way; whereas a boss is on the sidelines telling the way. It’s a great example that’s easy to see. People want to follow those that are brave enough to get out in front, and not those that sit on the sidelines and let others do the hard work.
The same is when you demand accountability as a leader. If you’re not all working together toward a common goal, the accountability is nothing more than the threat of punishment. In other words, you can’t demand that your employees stay on task, when you don’t hold yourself to the same regard.
This all begins with transparency as a leader. Hold yourself accountable, be transparent, and work towards adding value to the company.
How to Be Transparently Accountable as a Leader
It’s easy to talk about it, but how does it play out “in real life”? It will be different for every business, but there are some common guidelines that we can follow in order to be transparent, and most importantly, hold ourselves accountable first. Ask yourself:
- What am I doing that is adding value to the company (both to teammates and clients)? If I’m doing the same thing as everyone else, what’s the point? Determine how I can go over and above to provide exceptional value.
- What do I need to change to move the company in the direction it must go?
- How can I begin implementing those changes (design specific steps)?
- When will I start?
Quit putting it off, and start creating the change that you want to see. As soon as it has been implemented, then start with weekly follow-ups to determine the efficacy of the changes. You, as the leader, must be transparent in working toward the goals. Only then can you expect those under you to be transparent as they work toward the same goals.
Big Sky Collision Center Trains Leaders
Here at Big Sky Collision we like to say that we train leaders, we just happen to be good at fixing cars. That isn’t just a fun thing to say. As we invest into the lives of the teammates, they take ownership of their jobs. They strive for accountability so that they can become the best they could ever be (no matter what position they hold with the company). The ultimate result is that you, the customer, have a vehicle that has been expertly repaired to factory safety standards.
If you’ve been in a wreck recently, give us a call at 406-259-6328 to schedule a time to bring your vehicle in.