For a business to be a success, all staff need to be working towards the same goals. Ensuring that you instil a strong sense of individual accountability in the workplace will mean that your employees work harder to achieve success and feel they have more autonomy over the outcome.
Failure to hold staff accountable will lead to a general feeling of apathy amongst your workforce. If they believe they will be challenged for underachieving, they will have no impetus to work hard. It may also cause deep divisions amongst staff if some feel that they need to work harder than others to ensure those team goals are reached.
Staff need to have a clear and detailed understanding of what your expectations are. To be held accountable, they need to understand what they need to do to meet your expectations. Set SMART goals (goals which are SPECIFIC, MEASURABLE, ACHIEVABLE, RELEVANT and TIMELY).
Ensure that goals and expected outcomes are recorded in writing so that there can be no misunderstanding about what is needed and by when. Staff can refer back to this document to help them to understand what they need to do and it will also be a useful reference point if you need to discipline staff at a later stage for failing to meet objectives.
Keeping track with reviews
By scheduling regular reviews to monitor staff performance, you can ensure that staff are maintaining their focus on the objectives and can offer them additional support to reach their goals successfully. It will ensure that staff remain aware of their accountability.
Regular reviews will also help to involve your staff and take feedback from them. Ask them what they need to be successful and ensure that they are provided with them. This will mean that they are fully prepared for the task ahead and will be unable to blame a lack of preparation or resources on a failed task. Asking staff for their input also opens up a channel of communication which will be helpful if staff feel that they are at risk of not achieving their goals. If they feel able to communicate and change a situation, they are more likely to pursue these changes than give in to an impending sense of failure.
Consistency is key for accountability
Ensure that you are consistent and firm. If staff are failing to meet expectations, there will need to be a discussion with them about the consequences. These consequences must be the same for all staff and should be consistently applied at all times. Even though these conversations may be difficult to have, staff must see that a lack of accountability will be tackled.
If you feel that you need support in creating a structured review system for your employees get in touch to book a consultation. Altum HR work closely with their clients to develop bespoke training and development plans helping staff feel more engaged and confident in being accountable for their performance.