How do leaders and managers ensure accountability in their team and what are the signs of a lack of accountability?
Can you hear the language of accountability at work?
Does this sound familiar?
Team leader: Can you get this done by the end of the day?
Team member: I’ll do my best but I’m pretty busy.
Do you have confidence the task will be done?
Team leader: I need this done by 5 today. Can you meet that deadline?
Team member: It might be difficult I have 2 other deadlines.
Team leader: Well, this is a priority. How can I help?
What about now? Confident the task will be done?
If you want your team to be accountable, you need to give them clear expectations.
If you give specific expectations, you’ll receive specific answers.
Don’t give or accept vague deadlines.
ARP – Analyse – Revise – Perform
Listen to yourself
Do you set clear objectives?
Do you give vague promises?
Listen to your team
Do they say yes or no directly?
Do they say ‘I’ll try’ or I’ll do my best’?
When you think:
‘as soon as possible’ or ‘ by the end of the day’
‘By 5pm’ or, even better, ‘when can you do this by?’
If your team replies ‘I’ll try’ ask ‘What help do you need to meet the deadline?’
Next time you set a task:
- Be clear
- Be specific
- Expect clear responses
- Follow up vague replies and offer help