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The Buck Stops Here

Summary:  We have all heard the saying “the buck stops here”. The word for this is accountability. Begin a culture of accountability with yourself and your people.

We have all heard the saying “the buck stops here”. This is usually heard when someone is referring to the CEO. However most of us would like to hear this from all of our staff. Well maybe not so much that the buck stops stops with them as much as they take responsibility for their actions. Not just the ones which have positive results but the negative ones as well.

buck 320x240 The Buck Stops Here

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There is a word for this…accountability.

A word some have attributed to workplace Nirvana.  If only people were more accountable,  all would be good at work. Or, we need to increase accountability if we want to move forward. Or, until we have accountability we cannot progress.

How do we get this? Is it possible or some fairy tale of perfection which cannot be reached.

You can develop a culture of accountability. It starts with YOU. Yes, this is important that you lead by your actions – lip service won’t do.

Are you accountable for what you do and the decisions you make? If not, your people wont be either. If you are, ask it from the rest.

How do you begin to instill accountability in others?

Praise in public. Besides being a good human relations effort, people will appreciate the recognition for their hard work.

Criticize in private. Again, good human relations. Also people need to know when to make corrections, when the desired results weren’t achieved and  when they were plain wrong.

Debrief.  When things go wrong, review with the person what happened and why. In retrospect were there signs they didn’t notice, people not working to their full potential, unrealistic deadlines or poor direction. Only by reviewing what didn’t work can they be avoided in the future. Also review what went right and what needs to keep happening.

Seek correction. On solo tasks or projects, corrections need to be made. Ask for what they will do going forward. Don’t tell them, its important they come up with the solution.  This act alone with create responsibility within the person.

Lessons learned. Share the debrief with the team, have all involved come up with a solution. Same as above on a team level. Everyone contributes to the solution and the team will take responsibility.

What have you done to create accountability?

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