What do you think of when you see the words “being held accountable”?
If you break out into a cold sweat and start fanning yourself with an Ikea catalog, you aren’t alone.
Many people think of accountability as a four letter word. Some may even equate it with the most dreaded of situations: Micro-managing. However, if you have recently joined a mastermind group, began working one on one with a coach, or have started to set goals for the coming months or years, chances are that accountability is going to become a big part of your life.
Don’t worry. It doesn’t have to be that scary! Accountability is no longer synonymous with “blame.” We aren’t talking about a board room with a scary CEO demanding a head for the chopping block. We are talking about rising above your own personal best to achieve results the likes of which you have never achieved before.
Now doesn’t that sound a bit better?
First, let’s look at who you’re accountable to. If you’ve been low man on the totem pole for most of your life, you’ve always been accountable to bosses, middle managers, customers, clients, etc. If you are venturing into the world of entrepreneurship or even just self-improvement, there is one person that you are now accountable to.
Your mastermind group, your coach, your fancy calendar/planner where you write down all of your goals are all there to support you. If you fail to reach your goals, there won’t be a boss breathing down your neck (though there may be some irritate clients). It’s you who will be disappointed.
How does this accountability work? Well, much like goal setting, you will first identify your what it is you want. Is it to make more prospecting calls? Are you looking to write content for your website? How about finishing an online class to receive your next certification? No matter what your goal, you will first need to identify it.
Once you’ve identified your goal, you will set a “due date” for the activity. A goal without an end date is just a bucket list item.
Now, it’s time to bring it to your mastermind group, coach, friend, etc. This person, these people, are going to check with you and make sure that your goal is something you have:
- A strong desire to complete
- The means with which to do it
- Adequate time in which to do it
- Made the commitment to do
Now here’s the clincher — they’re going to hold you to it. These people will check in with you, provide the support you need to accomplish your goal and bust your butt if you don’t do it. Think of them as the angel sitting on your shoulder, or your own personal Jiminy Cricket.
A friend of mine recently “threw herself to the Accountability gods” on Facebook to write her first non-fiction book. She checks in daily with her word count and gets private messages from writing friends if she hasn’t written that day.
Whether it’s a mastermind group, a professional coach, or the fear of public embarrassment on social media, accountability is no longer a word to fear. Now, it’s your best tool to having the business you want and living the life of your dreams.
When has accountability played a role for you in achieving a goal or getting things done? For me, it’s been being part of a mastermind group. At each meeting, I have to own up to what I’ve done, or not done. I can tell you it’s pretty motivating! I certainly don’t want to show up saying I didn’t do what I said I was going to!