Weekly Thought - Vol. 87- Being Accountable

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Organizations everywhere are beginning to insist on new levels of accountability in their employees.

Responsibility, power and authority are being pushed down to all levels.  For this to work, you have to stand accountable for the results, good or bad.

Careers simply carry more personal exposure these days, and you can't get off the hook by using the old rationalizations; "I TRIED…I really worked hard…I did quality work…I did MY part!"

All of those lines sound good on the surface, but they won't sell if the OVERALL results aren't there.  You can’t sell yourself on a concept  or project that’s 99% done.  It’s either done or it’s not.  Companies function on results.

In these times of self-directed teams, empowered staff and boundary-less or reduced organizations, your worth as an individual employee will also get measured by your work group's collective results.

How is your TEAM performing?  The overall effectiveness of what you do reflects not only on you, but your team too.  It’s either getting done or it’s not.  You can’t claim success with something that stalls at 99%.

Holding yourself personally accountable for outcomes requires that you think broadly.  Consider the BIG picture, not just what's going on in your area.  See if you're really doing all you should do to bring about the right results.  Learn to work across departmental boundaries.

Avoid the turf issues.  Combine your efforts with others who, though different from you, are contributing to the same end results.

Concentrating on outcomes also keeps you from falling in love with a particular way of doing something.

Or, put another way, you're less likely to waste time, energy and other resources on low-payoff work routines if your real passion is for reaching results.

All of our work becomes cleanest when we design it to be solely in service of OUTCOME.

So streamline your approach.  Eliminate the extra steps. Get rid of the tasks that no one can justify.

The more intent you are on achieving a targeted outcome, the less tolerant you'll be of clumsy or unnecessary work processes.

Having to shoulder personal accountability for results give you a great incentive to clean out the clutter in how your place operates.   Organizations have to understand how APPROACH can interfere with OUTCOME.

So do your part.   Drive the organization directly toward the outcome that counts the most:  More students in school, more students staying in school and more students graduating with jobs.