The Accountability Blog

Category: Blog

New Zealand’s Prime Minister: Accountable Leadership after the Unthinkable

Two of the critical commitments accountable leaders make are “It’s all of us” and “We stand together when all hell breaks loose.”  Accountability is born in those commitments. After the horrific massacres last week at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, in which 50 people lost their lives, the world got a chance to see accountability in action. New Zealand’s prime minister, Jacinda Ardern, sent both messages. She quickly responded to the terrorist violence with

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A Spring Training Lesson on Accountable Leadership

The other day, I was reading an article in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch about one of the St. Louis Cardinals’ hottest prospects for 2019, a young Canadian outfielder by the name of Tyler O’Neill who made his debut last year. A quote from this young man near the end of the article really jumped out at me, because it pointed directly toward some foundation concepts that support accountable leadership. O’Neill said: “I’m always get­ting closer

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The College Admissions Scandal: Society’s Failure of Accountability

You’ve no doubt heard news reports about multiple high-profile indictments of wealthy parents who allegedly paid college coaches and others some truly staggering sums — with the reported aim of getting their children into top-tier universities they otherwise wouldn’t have gotten into. In just one jaw-dropping example of accountability failure in college admissions, a young woman with zero soccer skills somehow emerged as top soccer recruit for Yale. Her parents paid a consultant $1.2 million

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A Spring Training Lesson on Accountable Leadership

The other day, I was reading an article in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch about one of the St. Louis Cardinals’ hottest prospects for 2019, a young Canadian outfielder by the name of Tyler O’Neill who made his debut last year. A quote from this young man near the end of the article really jumped out at me, because it pointed directly toward some foundation concepts that support accountable leadership. O’Neill said: “I’m always get­ting closer

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Your Best People Are Leaving…And I Know Why

Your organization is in crisis. A key person — or maybe a bunch of key people — just left, and now you’re struggling to deal with the consequences. Before you talk yourself into believing that you’re the victim here, let me suggest some tough questions. Please answer them honestly. Are you personally committed to telling your people the truth? How does your team know that for sure? What evidence do they have to the contrary?

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What the KKK and Jussie Smollett Have To Do With Accountability?

Accountability and truth always go together. If you’ve been following the news at all this week, you’ve learned about two outrageous news stories that whipped up intense emotions across the entire American social spectrum. The first involved the editor of a small-town Alabama newspaper, and the second involved a high-profile actor on a popular TV show. The two incidents may at first seem to be unrelated, but I’m convinced that they carry the same important

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Is It Really an Emergency? Some Thoughts on the Lost Art of De-escalation and the Lack of Accountability

When I was a kid, there was only one television in the house. This was long before the advent of technology that allowed you to record one show while you were watching another. If there was a program on that my brother wanted to watch, and it conflicted with one that I wanted to watch, someone had to win and someone had to lose. There was no accountability to each other. We each hated losing.

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The Truth Matters

Many people make the mistake of assuming that a commitment to truth simply means promising to tell the truth to other people. It is far more important to be able to tell yourself the truth. Telling yourself the truth must come first. If you can’t be honest to yourself, you can’t be honest to someone else. Telling yourself the truth isn’t something you do once and consider complete. It’s an ongoing process, something you commit

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Accountability Is Not Just For The Workplace

I spend a lot of time talking to teams and leaders about what accountability looks like on the organizational level – in the workplace. But it’s just as important to take a close look at accountability in our relationships with people outside of the workplace. In fact, I believe true accountability always starts at the level of the individual, not the level of the organization. Let me share an example of what accountability on the

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Holocaust Remembrance Needs More Than A Day

This weekend, the world was reminded of the horrific campaign of industrialized genocide unleashed by the Nazi regime against Jews, gays, the disabled, and other persecuted minorities. Holocaust Remembrance Day was officially January 27. It is right and fitting that the world pause once a year and set aside this day for remembrance. Yet there was a news story I came across that convinced me that I had an obligation to write a post about

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