Appreciating the significant impact of accountability on performance, many leaders seek to augment the individual accountability of each team member with an overall team, or shared accountability, in which all team members are responsible to one another, as well as to the leader, for achieving team goals.
While the overall responsibility for an outcome is still the leader’s alone, establishing a culture of shared accountability places an expectation on a team that they are likewise responsible for the success of the business. And the benefits produced for the leader, the team, and the organization justify the effort necessary to implement this strategy.
- Shared accountability triggers an awareness of respect, appreciation, and mutual dependence within the team that fosters a sense of ownership in the business, and forges a bond based on a mutual self-interest to succeed. Supporting one another, and holding one another accountable, for goal achievement sustains this bond, while encouraging team members to invest time and energy into making the business, not just themselves, successful.
- Shared accountability stimulates team members to discover the holistic, cross-functional operations of the business, and to share ideas and knowledge which can improve these operations. By relying on the combined knowledge and competency of the team being greater than that of the leader alone, the most effective resolutions to complex issues are more quickly identified and implemented, accelerating progress.
- Shared accountability broadens the leader’s competency and contributes to the development of all team members. The experience gained by overcoming barriers to achieve shared goals as a team, and doing so in a manner that reflects core values and expected behaviors, nurtures team members, and demonstrates for others the influence of culture on the success of the business for others in the business.
How could the strategy of shared accountability accelerate the progress of your business?