Tickthoseboxes Logo
How accountable are you?
Home » Accountability » 5 Core Principles of Accountability

5 Core Principles of Accountability

By Darren Finkelstein
By Darren Finkelstein

The Accountability Guy®

Happy and successful business woman boss working at computer in modern office looking at camera and smiling

Accountability is one of the most essential traits that a person can possess and display at the workplace. It will help you become a better leader, employee and person.

It doesn’t matter what your purpose of imbibing this trait is; the process to start with it remains the same for all. Hence, this trait will make you responsible and accountable for your actions wherever you go.

Curious to begin your accountability journey? Do you think you are prepared and well informed? If yes, then do you know what the core principles of accountability are? Probably not, but don’t worry, as that is precisely what we will discuss here in this article.

Download a FREE SAMPLE from my newest book.

The Accountability advantage book cover

What effect Accountability has on People Around you?

Accountability is a leadership trait that requires you to take responsibility for your actions, decisions, and errors. And once the leader becomes accountable, the team also follows.

But how is this going to help your employees or people around you? Well, go through the following pointers for better understanding-

  • It instils a sense of unity in your team because they understand that they are collectively responsible for what happens.
  • Accountability will improve the communication between your team members.
  • Accountability improves the workflow of your company because employees will feel more responsible for their actions.
  • It gives people or your employees a chance to reflect on their actions and improve.
  • It also infuses honesty in your team and helps you reward them for positive work fairly.

The Core Principles of Accountability

Now, that you know what accountability is and why is it essential in the workplace, it is time to discuss the core principles. Consider these core principles as the building blocks of an accountable personality. Once you understand these principles clearly, you will know what entails accountability.

Here is the list of all the principles of accountability along with a crisp explanation, have a look-

Clear Understanding of Role

What are the tasks for which you are responsible? What is the scope of your role at work? As these questions to yourself if you want to have a clear understanding of responsibilities.

You cannot become accountable until and unless you know what you are supposed to do precisely. So, when you are assigned a project or task, make sure to clear any doubts regarding your role.

Otherwise, you will either blame others or take the blame for the tasks in and out of your job scope, respectively.

Active Participation and Compliance

Once you have a clear awareness of your job scope and role, you must start participating actively. You are supposed to do the work and submit it before the deadline anyway, so why not start from the first day?

It will also eliminate the fear of approaching deadlines and the mess ups that happen as a result of it. In short, you will be able to do the work efficiently and ideally at the same time.

Additionally, you must ensure that you are working according to or in compliance with your company’s norms. Make sure that all the instructions are carefully followed because merely getting the job done isn’t your goal.

Ability to make reasonable Decisions

Taking a decision isn’t as easy as it sounds; one has to analyse different aspects before. And analysing all the aspects requires exemplary logical and analytical skills. However, employees generally develop these skills over time, and it helps them in the long run.

Understand that the tasks that you are responsible for will require your decision-making skills. You will have to decide the roadmap of the task and other crucial things which will affect the entire project. Hence, you must have the ability to make reasonable decisions if the situation demands it.


Being answerable is one of the essential principles of accountability because you cannot take charge of your actions without giving proper answers and justifications.

Additionally, you must also have answers to any query that comes your way. It will help in streamlining the entire process and reflect that you know what you are doing.

Ability to Handle Criticism

Accountability requires you to be a patient and understanding listener when you are given feedback. Feedbacks are a significant part of a successful organisation, and they aren’t always pleasant.

Remember that a true leader would never sugarcoat things; they will straight away tell you that you are doing wrong. Similarly, an honest employee who wants to improve would always expect honest feedback.

Hence, it is best to handle the criticism positively and focus on the takeaway.

Wrapping It Up

Accountability will change your personality and help your organisation become a better place for work. Start with your accountability journey, and you will see the difference in a few months.

And now that you correctly understand the core principles of accountability, don’t delay further.