Focused Leadership is a book which provides you a synopsis of the approach I diligently crafted, refined and applied in order to get the leadership results I desired over my 30-year career leading large and small organization in Fortune 500 companies as well venture capital backed start-ups. In Focused Leadership I have incorporated a series of informative and concise discussions regarding my leadership approach, which I now call the “10-Step Approach to Leading and Winning”.
Step 9: Insist on Accountability and Respect from All
Creating a greater accountability at every level of your organization is a means to gaining both organizational improvement and building an organization of mutual respect. When you fail to hold others accountable, you reap the consequences ---some obvious and some not so obvious.
Accountability is the willingness and interest to assume responsibility for one’s work and actions. It occurs only when team members accept full ownership of the results of their work. Without accountability, your organization is incapable of achieving and sustaining its best performance.
In leading high performance organizations, I have always made a concerted effort to utilize personal and team accountability to drive the execution of strategy and the accomplishment of organizational goals. Although the prospect of instilling accountability throughout an entire organization can seem daunting, I have found that each team member within an organization has the capability, if called upon, to contribute to building personal and team accountability. However, accountability is not something you can make people do. It has to be chosen, accepted and agreed upon by all the members within your organization. Your team must “buy in” to being accountable and responsible.
Also as a leader, it is vital that the people you are leading have respect for you. If you have their respect, they will work harder and longer to help you reach your vision.
Mutual respect is one of many values that most organizations seek to institutionalize. Like all values, it cannot be legislated or regulated into existence. However, it can be learned and it can be coached. It must also be demonstrated by you as the team’s leader.
From an organizational context, a team’s respect is not something handed to you when you take on a new leadership role. It is an essential leadership quality that you must build and earn over time. I have learned that if you know what you want, maintain a positive attitude, make yourself available and value team member differences, you can accelerate the process.
Although there is no sure method for gaining respect in a leadership role or instilling accountability instantly within an organization, as the team’s leader you should still insist on accountability and respect from all. Then, you should aggressively establish and embrace a workplace environment which will provide nourishment to both.
INSIST ON ACCOUNTABILITY AND RESPECT FROM ALL
Earl Cobb is the author of "Focused Leadership: What You Can Do Today to Become a More Effective Leader", and an American “rags-to-riches” success story. Through his hard work, dedication and faith, Earl has forged an accomplished career as a systems engineer, project/program manager, and gifted entrepreneur. He is also a highly respected senior management executive. He has enjoyed over twenty-five years of success within Fortune 100 companies including Honeywell, Inc., Motorola, Inc. and Wells Fargo Bank. He is the former President and CEO of MedContrax, Inc.
You can contact Earl at earl@richerlifellc. You can find his website at www.richerlifellc.com