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Staying the course: 5 proven accountability techniques

Updated: Aug 29, 2023

Accountability whether to your clients or to yourself, is a huge part of building a successful business.

When it comes to your clients, accountability is easy to do. You follow through on what it is you say you are going to do … that’s simply good business sense. Holding ourselves accountable to achieving business goals it is not easy; even though the returns can actually be greater.

Self-accountability is a skill that takes PRACTICE. It is really easy to let personal accountability slide when it impacts our business; to let go of our self-discipline and stop prioritizing what we are focusing our attention on.

Here are five tips that you can use to hold yourself more accountable on an ongoing basis:

Write down your action plan:

Write down what you need to do and when you’d like it done by. The process of thinking the process through and writing it down, cements the actions into our “intention.” And there is lot’s to be said about the power of intention; whole books have been written about that!

Imagine Your Success:

Olympians have used visualization techniques for decades. It seems like it’s time to adapt it and use it as a business tool that can help us grow our revenues. A simple search of YouTube will introduce you to many visualization tools / exercises that you can base your own visualization process on. Worth checking them out.

Ask for help:

While many of us are solo business owners, that doesn’t mean that we need to do it alone. Seek out other entrepreneurs who want to move their business forward strategically and set up an accountability partner system. Simply put, that means that you hold each other accountable for getting things done! And that’s just one benefit: the other is that you can use your accountability partner as a sounding board for your ideas. Always a bonus!

Check your priorities:

If you are avoiding an action item, ask yourself, how important is it to get done? You can use the Important / Urgent Matrix to reassess the priority of the action step. This tool helps you analyze what you need to do versus what you can drop versus what needs to be done but not necessarily by you. It’s a handy tool to check priorities and keep you on track.

Assess Your Progress:

If you are getting caught up in the “I don’t feel like I’m moving forward” then it is probably time to do an accountability check in on progress. To do this, ask yourself: What’s changed in the last 12 months? What progress have I made? What you uncover might be increased revenues, new systems, newly trained staff, change in perspective, new leadership skills; the list will grow based on where you have focused your attention. Then celebrate all the small and large achievements you have on your list. This will keep you focused as you move forward.

Which of these techniques have you used? Which worked well? Which didn’t work? Why not? What else have you done to maintain your accountability in business? We’d love to hear your thoughts.

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