An Accountability Hack for Teams

Following up with yesterday’s post 6 Steps to Build a Culture of Accountability, and the common response that it requires too much effort, there’s a simple accountability hack team managers should employ: run the weekly team meeting with a Google Sheet or project management system like Trello, Basecamp, or Asana. I know one entrepreneur that runs each leadership meeting with Asana open, every key project on display, and a general “Management” project where any action items that come up from the meeting are recorded as tasks. This level of accountability seems so simple yet few managers do it.

As a starting point, make a Google Worksheet with two sheets:

  • Projects
    • Name
    • Description
    • Owner
    • Status
    • Done? Y/N
    • Due Date
  • Action Items
    • Name
    • Owner
    • Done? Y/N

The “Done? Y/N” columns in each sheet make it easy to sort that column alphabetically and see what’s open and what’s complete.

Managers would do well to follow this simple accountability hack and do a better job of holding each team member accountable. Remember the old adage: what gets measured gets done.

What else? What are some more thoughts on this simple accountability hack for teams?

2 thoughts on “An Accountability Hack for Teams

  1. You know – I’ve been thinking about this and the heart of the discussion about accountability is really about process. I’d be willing to bet that managers/leaders who are dedicated to/comfortable with processes are fully on-board with the concept of managing accountability. If you have a good process (such as the ones you suggest), the managing of accountability is not particularly burdensome. And, accountability must go both ways for it to be an effective leadership tool and not simply turn into an episode of The Office. Leaders who are accountable to their team, inspire accountability in those teams. When leaders admit when they have failed to do something, or they see their leaders looking back on their commitments and disclosing whether they met those commitments, that is how a culture of accountability is built.

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