Accountability is simply holding yourself responsible for your actions, decisions and performance. As an entrepreneur, you are accountable to no one but yourself. On the other hand, your employees are all accountable to you. Holding a position of power can breed a sense of complacency in you and cause you to make poor decisions which might affect the growth of your company. If it is your own business, you might have a hard time making yourself accountable for your actions.
At the same time, the power of accountability is such that it can transform your personal and professional life. By holding yourself more accountable, you will find that you will be able to deal with people in a better way while also running your business to the best of your abilities. This will do wonders for the market value and bottom line of your business. As an added bonus, your self-esteem will improve considerably, and people will start respecting you even more.
Personal Accountability – The Key to Your Business’ Growth
When you are in a position of authority, you shouldn’t have to rely on others to remind you of your responsibilities. In fact, you are the person keeping tabs on whether or not the rest of pack is performing up to the mark or not. It’s not fair to the people who are working for you if you hold them accountable for the smallest of actions while not keeping yourself in check. It can create an unhealthy working environment in which your business cannot prosper.
The way to overcome this hurdle is to learn personal accountability. It is a skill that you have to acquire. There are few people in the world who are able to criticize themselves for anything they’ve done wrong. If you don’t think you are one of them, then you need to work on your attitude and make yourself more accountable. The first step towards enhancing your personal accountability is considering your actions and the decisions you make.
Decisions and Actions
You have to find a way to justify the time you spend on the work you are doing. Is it worth your while to create a spreadsheet when that time could be better spent elsewhere? Working hard is important, but you only have a limited time each day to complete your list of tasks. If you don’t think the action you are performing is worth the amount of time it is taking, you would be wise to delegate it. You have to continually prioritize your activities.
The same goes for the decisions you make. Your decisions influence the future of your company. However, this doesn’t mean that you should pragmatically debate every single decision you have to make. Once again, you have to justify the time you spend on making the decision with the impact it would have on the growth of your company.
As the person running the show, you can take on any number of responsibilities. However, you need to be able to complete them on time in order to be considered a successful entrepreneur. Otherwise, you’re hindering the growth of your business. Update a Prioritized Action List (PAL) at the start of each day and then delegate the tasks that you know someone else can perform. Stick to only those high-payoff tasks you know you can’t delegate to anyone else.
Most importantly, being accountable requires you to set and achieve goals. Setting goals is easy, but if you don’t have the drive to follow up on the progress you are making, they are worthless. These goals would include both your personal and professionals goals, so you need to maintain a good work/life balance. Create a simple way to track your daily, weekly, and monthly progress against your goals so you know you are on track.
If you can sort out these three aspects of your responsibilities, you won’t be hesitant about holding yourself accountable for your actions, decisions and goals. This is the barrier that needs to be removed if you’re going to keep performance in check. At the end of the day, your performance as an entrepreneur will directly impact the growth of your business.
Benefits of Accountability
The benefits of accountability are numerous. For one, you will become an even better entrepreneur and employer—dealing with your employees in a much more productive fashion. There are some other great benefits of accountability as well:
You will be more confident in your role as an entrepreneur. Confidence is the key to making big decisions that carry risk. In business, there is no reward without risk so confidence can help you take your business to the next level. Consistent execution and tracking of your results is key to applying accountability and getting even bigger results.
Your productivity will improve as you limit your focus to the areas of your business which demand your immediate attention. Rather than trying to solve every problem at once, you will have a clearer idea of what needs to be done first. Your success rate as an entrepreneur will also improve.
You will become a solid role model for your employees to follow. If they see that their boss is performing to the best of his or her abilities and holding themselves accountable for performance, they are likely to follow suit. It isn’t “Do as I say.” It is “Do as I do.” This is a great way to motivate employees and get the best out of them.
There are many more benefits to accountability, but the three mentioned above are the ones that will drive your business towards stellar growth in the future. If you want to become the best at what you do, you have to understand and appreciate the value of accountability. It will help you go a long way in both your personal and professional life.