How to foster a culture of accountability with your association staff

Are you looking for insights into how to build and lead high performing teams at your association? It all comes down to how you foster a culture of accountability with your team members.

With over 20 years of experience in B2B, B2B2C, and B2G technology space and over 10 years of executive leadership, I have extensive understanding in how to lead cross-functional teams. In that time, I’ve grown and led transformational, multi-national teams of over 200 team members. Ultimately, I’m passionate about fostering a staff culture of success to drive growth through member/customer and employee success regardless of the industry.

Read our blog to learn how to foster a culture of accountability with your association staff.

4 ways to build accountability on your team

As you seek to enhance your teams and foster a culture of collaboration, accountability should be at the core of your approach. Bob Proctor once said: “Accountability is the glue that ties commitment to the result,” reminding us of the crucial role accountability plays in achieving success.” When your team is accountable to their execution and constituent focus, your members can truly benefit.

Here are four practical steps to enhance accountability on your team:

1. Establish clear expectations

In my opinion, it’s best to begin by establishing clear expectations of everyone on your team. Do so by ensuring everyone understands what’s expected of them.

Begin by having a team meeting to discuss each of your team members’ roles, setting clear goals, and making sure everyone understands how their work contributes to the success of the team. You can also write down these expectations so your team can easily refer to them.

By clearly communicating your goals and expectations, you’ll give your team the freedom to innovate and come up with creative solutions to complex problems. You’ll also empower them to take ownership of their work and feel a greater sense of pride and accomplishment.

2. Implement regular check-ins

I’ve found it’s helpful to meet regularly with my team, and I make a point to schedule regular check-in meetings.

Try to set up weekly or bi-weekly meetings with your team members to review their progress, discuss any challenges they’re facing, and give feedback. These check-ins will help keep everyone on track and accountable for their work.

Remember to be transparent and honest in these check-ins. It’s a lot easier to be held accountable when you feel your leader is also holding themselves accountable. Check-ins are not a one-way street, but an opportunity for open discourse!

3. Foster a culture of ownership

In my time as a leader, I’ve encouraged my team members to take ownership of their work. When everyone takes ownership of their work, it fosters a culture of accountability.

Consider recognizing and celebrating instances where your team members show initiative and take responsibility for their tasks. When you encourage open communication and teamwork, everyone will feel invested in your team’s success.

Lead by example: Actions speak louder than words. Demonstrate the qualities you want to see in your team. Show integrity, accountability, and perseverance. When you lead by example, you inspire others to follow and hold themselves accountable.

4. Accountability is not a “gotcha”

Anytime that I’ve seen accountability used as a “gotcha”, it has backfired. Ultimately, your staff will come to resent you.

To use accountability to inspire your staff and team members, encourage open communication and assure them it’s okay to make mistakes, if they’re willing to learn. Emphasize that accountability is about improvement, not punishment.

By following these steps, you can create a culture of accountability where everyone is committed to achieving results. Remember, accountability starts with you as a leader, so when you lead by example, you’ll show your team what it means to take ownership of your work.

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