“No one wants to learn by mistakes, but we cannot learn enough from successes to go beyond the state of the art.” Henry Petroski

“Creating a safe work environment, like any other organization-wide initiative, can only be assured when everyone, in every job, takes ownership and accountability for making the workplace safe.”

First, accountability means you are responsible to somebody or for something.
Second, being responsible means that you cause something to happen.
Third, exhibiting accountability, as seen through the eyes of your co-workers, looks like the following:

  1. Accepting complete responsibility for your behavior
  2. Meeting/exceeding agreed upon expectations.
  3. Admitting mistakes.
  4. Admitting limitations of knowledge.

Accepting complete responsibility for your behavior.
No more excuses. No more finger pointing. Accepting responsibility is being fully aware of exerting control of your behavior through your choices. Additionally, you accept the consequences of the choices you make while taking the good with the bad. Integrity, or doing what is right, because that’s the right thing to do, is the epitome of accepting responsibility. You can exhibit personal accountability to create this synergy by modeling the following behaviors.

  1. Know the expected results to be achieved.
  2. Meet/exceed these expectations proactively.
  3. Volunteer to assist whenever possible.
  4. Encourage feedback regarding your performance.
  5. Use the feedback offered to improve performance.

There is no time for laziness when being accountable. The choice is yours. Are you going to be a peak performer or a lazy team member? Remember, the strength of every chain is determined by the strength of its weakest link. Do you want to be the weakest link of your team? Sometimes, lazy people think they are high performers!

This is an excellent example of the fact that your perception of me is more important than my perception of me. The smart thing to do is to ensure your coworkers have the same perception that you do – “that you’re accountable”

Advantages of Being Accountable Exceed the Disadvantages

You have much to gain by exhibiting personal accountability. Some of these are listed below:

  1. You are trusted.
  2. You are respected.
  3. You send the message that you are willing to do whatever is necessary for the success of the team.
  4. You are a “high performing” professional.
  5. You can be trusted to complete challenging and meaningful job assignments.

Who do you want to be?

Perceptions Quantify

Instructions: Complete the self assessment using the following Likert scale.

1 = Never
2 = Almost Never
3 = Sometimes
4 = Frequently
5 = Almost Always
6 = Always

  1. I accept responsibility for my behavior.
  2. Colleagues describe me as exhibiting integrity or doing what is right because it’s the right thing to do.
  3. I know the expected results to be achieved.
  4. I proactively meet/exceed what is expected of me.
  5. I volunteer to assist others whenever possible.
  6. I encourage others to provide constructive feedback as to how I can improve my performance.
  7. I use the constructive feedback offered by others to improve my performance.
  8. I willingly admit my mistakes.
  9. I willingly admit limitations to my knowledge.
  10. Overall, I exhibit personal accountability.

Ref: Byrd Baggett, CSP; Larry Cole, Ph.D.; Michael Cole, Ph.D.; Personal Accountability

“Some favorite expressions of small children: “It’s not my fault. . . They made me do it. . . I forgot.”

“Some favorite expressions of adults: “It’s not my job. . . No one told me. . . It couldn’t be helped.”

And another quote from Dan Zadra:

“True freedom begins and ends with personal accountability.”

Thanks for the share, TO!