For an organisation to function well, there must be high trust in the workplace. This comes from taking accountability and ownership of one’s work. However, creating accountability within an organisation or team can be challenging.
One must never lose sight of the fact that fostering accountability requires ongoing effort.
It calls for effective training and evaluation to keep everyone on the same page. A single person cannot change everyone’s behaviour at work. Therefore, everyone must study and track their development to acquire the same attributes.
This blog breaks down what accountability in ownership is. It also focuses on practical techniques for cultivating accountability in the workplace.
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While ownership takes the initiative, accountability implies responsibility for an outcome. It involves keeping one’s word, abiding by set timelines and being honest when expectations can’t be met.
Here’s what it means to take ownership and accountability at work:
When workers take pride in their work and own it, they prioritise the success of their company. Here’s how an individual and workplace benefits by taking ownership and accountability:
On the other hand, those who lack ownership only perform the bare minimum.
They go through the motions without genuinely caring about the outcome. Unaddressed, this mindset unfortunately also spreads. It has the potential to quickly affect a sizeable section of the workforce, resulting in a performance decline.
Having recognised the importance of ownership and accountability, let us explore the actionable steps for cultivating these qualities within an organisation.
Clear expectations are a key component in cultivating accountability. One must clearly state an individual’s or team’s objectives, benchmarks, and due dates.
When expectations are clearly stated, employees are more likely to take responsibility for their job. Giving employees a detailed schedule of their jobs and responsibilities directs them to meet and surpass objectives.
By defining the final goal and establishing clear expectations, leaders can paint a picture of success. However, it is critical for leaders to refrain from spoon-feeding the path to success and instead empower their staff to choose their own approach.
By concentrating on the desired result, leaders can effectively encourage their employees and demonstrate their belief in their abilities. Instead of simply assigning tasks, leaders should assign responsibilities, enabling employees to take ownership and exert their best efforts.
This approach fosters a sense of autonomy and encourages employees to think creatively. By communicating the desired outcome precisely, leaders provide clarity to their employees while also granting them the freedom to figure out the best path to achieve the goal.
This strategy encourages creative thinking, builds a culture of ownership and accountability, and fosters a sense of autonomy.
A leader must provide an example of accountability through their work ethic and conduct. Setting a good example is done by working hard and taking responsibility for your actions. In turn, this fosters an environment where everyone in the company is appreciated and held accountable.
Managing or overseeing minute details can breed resentment and hinder initiatives. It makes employees feel like their skills are not valued enough.
Micromanaging leads to employees making decisions out of fear of being criticised.
They constantly check in to see if they’re doing okay and ask for your approval. This effectively discourages initiative. Therefore, it isn’t realistic to expect to foster an environment of ownership and accountability within your company.
Everybody’s mind functions differently. Your company may always gain from the diverse viewpoints present among your personnel.
So, while assigning tasks, create a vision that allows your team to make decisions, resolve issues, and think critically about achieving the goal. More so, this will make employees happier and more productive.
Effective communication is never a one-sided affair. Create an environment where your team feels comfortable voicing their ideas and opinions. This will help your employers and colleagues feel empowered, knowing that they are heard and their opinions valued.
Dismissing your employees’ ideas is akin to micromanagement. It conveys the message that their input holds no significance, reducing their sense of impact and involvement.
By embracing the power of listening, you create an environment where everyone feels heard. Further, this leads to increased engagement, collaboration, and a stronger culture of ownership within your organisation.
Ultimately, leaders hold the power to select their collaborators within an organisation. By understanding and embracing the principles of accountability, individuals and organisations can achieve remarkable results and overcome challenges with resilience and determination.
The insights shared by accountability coach Darren Finkelstein, also known as The Accountability Guy, shed light on the power of taking ownership.
Darren Finkelstein collaborates with high-performing individuals and teams to unlock their potential and deliver outstanding outcomes. With over 30 years of experience in both the corporate world and small business, Darren utilises his expertise to help clients achieve their wildest dreams and surpass their goals. Reach out to him if you wish to improve performance at your workplace by aligning everyone’s efforts and promoting accountability.