Accountability, we’re seeking it from those around us.
Whether at work or home, when those around you commit and keep their word, it creates ease, flow, results, trust, and connection. I like to call that count-on-ability.
Most of us realize that when people are non-committal, wishy washy, tentative, or vague the chain reaction creates challenges, stresses those around you, interrupts progress, causes missed deadlines, catalyzes disconnection, and erodes trust. So why do we allow these behaviors to happen?
Every day, good leaders accept non-specific, non-committal responses to our requests in the moment because we’re in a hurry, more focused on the answer we want (so any resemblance to that answer slides by), or simply not fully present so we don’t challenge the answer and button it down to a full commitment.
And doing so may make you unpopular in the moment as well.
To create clarity involves being tenacious enough to agree upon specifically what will be completed, with a time (end of day or week is not a time, neither is tomorrow morning nor naming a day of the week), you can include any of these, but offering a time manages expectations for all people involved. It also means a firm yes, no or counteroffer with both people agreeing to terms.
Most of us are poor at making requests like this let alone agreeing to things and committing this way. If you want to be a great leader, manage your commitments with firm commitments.
Responsibility without commitment is a mess.