Posted by: magnussonllc | February 4, 2010

Being Accountable

There are two key dimensions of practicing accountability. The first is to hold yourself accountable, the second is to hold others accountable. Leaders who generate trust do both. Accountability is an important thing. Unfortunately, for many people the focus is on fixing the behavior of others. While this might be true, this is the wrong place to put the focus, at least at first.

Take a Look in the Mirror

 If you want greater accountability around you, start by being more accountable yourself.  If you want to engender and create greater accountability in those around you, you have to start by being a good role model. You can be 100% accountable yourself. Being accountable is about figuring out how you can make things better. Other people’s actions aren’t in your control, and many events aren’t in your control either, but your response to these situations and events is completely in your control. You can choose to be 100% accountable and responsible for your response. 

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • What is my role in this situation?
  • What am I doing (or not doing) to promote the situation as it currently exists?
  • What about this situation is in my control?
  • What am I thinking?
  • What are my beliefs?
  • What can I do to have an impact?
  • What can I do differently to change the result?


Asking these questions takes courage, because it takes away your ability to blame others. Asking these questions may be a change of your habits. Asking these questions may be hard, because the answers may require work. Accountability can have a powerful practical value to achieving our goals and or overcoming problems or issues.

Being accountable takes a tremendous amount of character, courage and honesty, especially if you seek an accountability partner for a goal you desire to achieve.


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