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Will Greater Accountability Hurt Your Corporate Culture?

05/09/2019

Will Greater Accountability Hurt Your Corporate Culture?

You know accountability is necessary to gain Traction®, but how will greater accountability affect the culture of your workplace? You don’t want to give up the fun, family feel of work. You don’t want people to start dreading Mondays because somebody’s going to hold their feet to the fire. You want a lively, engaged workplace that people love to be a part of. Will greater accountability be a company culture killjoy?

Perhaps the better question to ask is, “What happens when there’s no accountability?”

Imagine No Accountability

Imagine there’s no accountability on your team. It isn’t hard to do, especially if this is in your leadership team’s recent history. We all know what happens to productivity and profits when accountability has left the building. But it has repercussions for your workplace culture as well. For example…

It starts fires

The lack of accountability means balls get dropped. The delivery date comes and goes, or a security patch slips through the cracks, or clients don’t get the follow-up they were promised. Suddenly you’ve got an emergency, and it’s Friday afternoon.

Now you’ve got a five-alarm fire for your entire team to put out, just as they were getting ready to enjoy the weekend. Your lack of accountability has created a culture of chaos.

It creates stress

The stress-free life is a paradise of ease and enjoyment. We dream of the day when we can retire on a beach with no responsibilities. Ahhh…to be free of accountability. Right? Well, not really.

Workplaces without accountability are high-stress environments. Those fires aren’t going to put themselves out, and there’s no telling when the next one will burst into flame. So your team is constantly in an elevated state of stress.

It erodes your team

An unaccountable team really isn’t much of a team. You need to know that you can count on your co-workers to do what they say they’ll do, and you need to know they’ve got your back in the rare case of a snafu.

When teams lack accountability, it’s every person for themselves, and the team only exists in name only.

It spurs your best people to leave

High performers can get work anywhere. There’s very little incentive for them to stay in an environment that lacks accountability. As a result, your team is left with the least engaged people, who don’t give their best to their work. As a result, you have the team no one wants to be a part of.

Accountability Empowers Autonomy and Ownership

On the other hand, greater accountability boosts employee engagement, because it nurtures autonomy and ownership. When people are held accountable, they have clear expectations for success. Within those expectations, they have the freedom to do their work autonomously and creatively. That’s incredibly freeing, and it produces a sense of pride in the work.

Accountability Isn’t Micromanaging

There’s a misconception that greater accountability means more micromanaging. Actually, it’s less accountable workplaces that are most micromanaged. When a manager is constantly hovering, correcting and checking in on you, it’s because there’s a lack of trust and a lack of accountability on the team. Micromanaging is the only way the manager can be assured the work is being done!

But accountable teams have built-in, structured expectations that allow leaders and managers to take a hands-off approach. That cultivates a positive company culture that will keep your best employees around—and help your low performers to either grow or leave the company.

Accountable companies have the healthiest corporate cultures. When you think about it, it’s not hard to imagine why!

Traction® Tools Helps You Boost Accountability!

The Entrepreneurial Operating System® is designed to keep your leadership team accountable. But even when you’re running on EOS®, it can sometimes be tough to maintain accountability. It’s human nature to let things slide, especially when you operate manually.

With Traction Tools, accountability is built in. We’ve incorporated automation into the EOS Foundational Tools™, to help ensure that your team stays accountable, week-in and week-out.

Take your accountability—and your corporate culture—to the next level. Get started with Traction Tools for free.

Kathy Mayfield

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