I recently completed climate surveys with all of my coaching clients. I wanted to find out how I could improve in the service I provide them as their coach.

The one common piece of feedback I received was they wanted me to be more diligent in holding them accountable. We end each coaching session with action items, and they invited me to be tougher on insuring they complete their commitments.

Accountability within a culture is vitally important. Without it, the environment can be chaotic where no one can count on anyone. Without accountability you will never achieve a high performing team or organization. People are self-willed and like to go their own way, which they will if accountability is not expected.

To be effective, accountability cannot be a one-way street. If I want accountability from others, I must first become accountable to them. This is mutual accountability.

Mutual accountability starts with leaders. Servant leaders are accountable for insuring Clarity. Make sure the following is crystal clear:

  • Purpose, Vision, & Values – People need to know where they are going and most importantly WHY they are going there. They also need to understand how they are supposed to behave on the journey.
  • Expectations – What specifically are you expecting from the people in your sphere of influence? Goals should be very well defined with specific completion dates.
  • Measurements / Feedback – Keeping score is important. Measure what will make a difference and insure appropriate feedback mechanisms exist to provide the score to the people that need it.
  • Consequences – It is important that it is well understood what will happen if expectations are not met. Then follow through when necessary.

Employees, your children, or anyone else within your sphere of influence should expect leader accountability in insuring clarity in each of these areas. Mutual accountability…

I appreciate it when my coaching clients ask me to help them improve their accountability. It’s another sign of the high performing leaders I get the opportunity to serve. What a blessing!

Where would you like to improve in building a culture of accountability?

Mark Deterding

So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God. Romans 14:12