1. the person or entity that others can count on to deliver on their promises
  2. has the final decision-making authority
  3. responsible to someone or for some action; answerable
  4. you can trust

"You've got a problem with avoiding personal accountability."

"Ya, and whose fault is that?"

"It wasn't me ... I'm in Accounting. You might want to check with Watkins in 'Accountability'..."

"The best years of your life are the ones in which you decide your problems are your own. You do not blame them on your mother, the ecology, or the president. You realize that you control your own destiny."
Albert Ellis

  1. "I am the one leading that project and responsible for the results."
  2. "You can count on me to deliver as promised."
  3. "I will be there exactly at 10:00 a.m."
  4. "You can ask the other customers about the service they received from our team."
  5. "We have a 10-year history of delivering under budget."
You feel confident, open and ready to take decisive action.


  1. Being accountable forces you out of your comfort zone, keeps you on your toes, gives you freedom to creatively solve problems and create results.
  2. Accountable is one of the foundations for trust and integrity.
  3. You must remain vigilant from inception to completion.
  4. Often you must reach beyond your normal boundaries to ensure success.
  5. "I own the process from end to end."
  6. There is a tension, a risk involved in being accountable because if things go wrong people will look to you. "The buck stops with me."


  1. Stay execution oriented.
  2. Only make promises that you can keep.
  3. Communicate immediately if things start to go off track. Let stakeholders know what is happening and establish a plan to address the problems that have arisen.
  4. Enhance your engagement of others in the goals.
  5. When you hold someone accountable ensure they are clear on the deliverables, are capable, and have the resources to deliver. Support their success by having consistent communication with them. Let them know your job is to make them successful.
  6. As a leader take the hit for your team when things go wrong. You have their back. Never throw someone under the bus.
  7. When they go right, celebrate their success.




© 2016 Jim Peal