4 tips when holding people to account…

How many times in your business have you avoided an ‘accountability’ conversation?

At that moment when someone has not delivered something that they promised or not hit a deadline that was crucial, have you tackled the situation, had the conversation?

The answer for most managers or business owners is no… because holding people to account is not for the faint hearted, they are hard conversations to have – even harder to get right.

AND put simply, most of us don’t want the stress or the grief that comes from having such difficult discussions.

However, broken promises, missed deadlines and bad behaviour all hold your business back.

They all result in lower productivity, higher costs and lost profits.

So, it pays to work on your accountability skills.

Here are 4 tips to start making your accountability conversations more productive and less stressful:

1) Slow down – don’t launch into any accountability conversation without preparing. ‘Speed rarely leads to careful thought’.

For your accountability conversation to work you must take time to unbundle the problem. There is rarely just one issue at play…

2) Choose the right issue – avoid focusing on the wrong issue or too many issues – sounds simple but in any conversation it’s easy to get drawn into ‘oh yes and there is this too’.

Use CPR (Content; Pattern; Relationship) plus Intentions and Consequences to help you choose the issue of most importance and therefore the one to tackle.

3) Should you or shouldn’t you – having worked out the issue you want to address in your accountability conversation, now take time to think about whether you really want to or not. If it’s a one-off or a small infraction, then maybe this time it can be overlooked – but don’t overlook it just to avoid the conversation.

4) Make your people feel safe – use the right words in your accountability conversation, if a member of your team feels threatened by the conversation, then it will fail. Use the contrast principle to let them know what you are happy with, but that you need to address ‘just’ this issue…

Click here to discover the skills necessary to have healthy accountability conversations in your business.

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