One of the reasons people don’t like to take accountability is because it’s much easier to blame someone else if you’re not accountable. It’s that simple.
But the reality is if you’re the leader, the manager, the person in charge then you are accountable there is no getting away from it.
Which means if your team is not functioning well, not performing and you want to know where the problem lies, then get a mirror and the person responsible will usually be looking back at you. Great leaders know and accept this.
Teams reflect their leadership, so if they are not functioning well then it’s usually due to the leadership, i.e. you.
I have worked in several companies where the bosses have been unhappy because there was a blame culture. This was the case because they have either tolerated that type behavior or even worse they have initiated the behavior.
Many years ago in one company the boss constantly complained about people being late for meetings, arriving late to work and leaving early. Yet he was the worst; he was setting the example of exactly the type of behavior that he didn’t like.
In another company there was a boss who was constantly talking about honesty and integrity and how he wanted to see more of that within the organization.
The problem was everyone knew he was having an affair with his secretary even though he was married with two children and a pregnant wife.
He talked the talk, but didn’t walk the walk and yet was surprised when his organization didn’t reflect the kind of behaviour he wanted. Why should they, he didn’t?
So as leaders, if there is something about our teams we don’t like, then we should examine our own behavior to see whether we are the role models for that type of behavior.
As leaders we are the role models for our teams, so if we want a specific type of behavior then we need to exhibit that behavior.
For example, if we want our teams to show accountability, then we need to show our accountability.
If we want our teams to create an open trusting environment, then we need to be open and trusting.
For good or bad our teams will follow our lead, so we need to choose wisely.
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