How do you get time for training in one of the fastest moving environments around? And, how do you gain people’s attention when your company is literally processing the world in real-time?
Simple: You build stronger relationships based on a common language that speeds communication, improves collaboration, and gets better business results. And that’s what’s happening @Twitter.
Twitter chose the SDI because it gives people a powerful common language. And it’s not just because “Blue” is only four characters. Although “a person who is deeply concerned about the welfare of others and wants to help them” does take up 83 characters. “Blue” saves space and time, but it also increases clarity and shared understanding.
The colors (shorthand for personality types in the SDI) make it easy for people to quickly recognize what’s driving others. The colors, and deep meaning behind them, also help to dispel the incorrect interpersonal judgements that get in the way in fast-moving environments.
Boys and Girls Clubs of America
How would you like to be accountable to 4 million boys and girls? Just ask the staff at Boys and Girls Clubs of America (BGCA). Every year, they are accountable to help these children grow, develop, thrive, and fulfill their potential.
But the staff is also accountable to each other – and to themselves. That’s where Core Strengths Accountability training comes in. The training grounds personal accountability where it belongs – with each person. It helps BGCA staff identify their core drives and strengths, understand each other better, and gives them a common language to clean up some of the inherent messiness of working together.
Better Decision-Making Through Accountability
I recently had a conversation with a friend who was wrestling with a tough decision. Oftentimes, tough decisions involve choosing between two less-than-ideal options — discerning the lesser of two evils. In my friend’s case, there were two good options. Both would likely yield a positive outcome in the near and long-term future. Surprisingly, it didn’t make the decision any easier for him. In fact, the choice remained incredibly difficult. The conversation made me think about David Brooks’ recent op-ed in the New York Times, The Choice Explosion. In the article, Brooks describes social science research that reveals how Americans crave options, yet don’t feel equipped to consistently make good choices. In fact, in some ways, we are wired to make poor choices. While experts offer a variety of techniques for weighing options, Brooks eventually prescribes a large dose of self-awareness as perhaps the most critical component of better decision-making. At this point, my friend had been deliberating for weeks already, struggling to make the right decision or at least the one that would be best for his career and family, and allow him to feel good about the path forward. He was more than willing to take responsibility for...Read More
The Learning Theory of Accountability
Five Ways in which Core Strengths Accountability Aligns with Adult Learning Theory Thanks to Malcolm Knowles (1913-1997), talent development professionals have had the opportunity to use the very erudite-sounding word, andragogy, to describe something most of us know intuitively: adults learn differently than children. While it’s sometimes fun to throw around “six-dollar words,” it really comes down to the fact that adults need to be involved in the learning process, find what they’re learning to be relevant to their real-world situations, and recognize opportunities for immediate application. Without these elements, training can fall flat with little hope for a sustainable performance boost. Although adult learning theory has informed the design of corporate training for the last 30 years, some courses more closely align with the critical principles of andragogy than others. In this paper, I will explain how the design and delivery of Core Strengths Accountability honors the principles of adult learning. In fact, Core Strengths Accountability can truly be transformative as learners begin to see themselves, their colleagues, and their world differently. What We Know about Adult Learners Nearly everyone agrees on a few key ideas when it comes to designing and delivering effective workplace learning: 1. Teachers are...Read More
Positive People Perform Better At Work
Accountability Raises PsyCap You might have a hard time saying that 10 times quickly, but that doesn’t make it any less true. It’s been proven by scholarship in the emerging field of positive organizational behavior, but it also reflects the experiences of anyone who has managed people for more than a few days. Just think about the times when you’ve had one of those grumpy, glass-half-empty folks on your team. An Eeyore isn’t very productive and tends to drag down the productivity of others, as well What’s less well known, however, is how personal accountability creates more positive people—the kind of people you fight to have on your team. That’s because personal accountability improves your team’s PsyCap. My team’s what? you ask. Psychological capital, or PsyCap, is a relatively new term researcher coined when describing the benefits of positivity. Dr. Fred Luthans, the George Holmes Distinguished Professor of Management at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, has identified four PsyCap components: self-efficacy, hope, optimism, and resilience. Luthans and his fellow researchers believe people can develop these elements through brief training interventions. But what kind of training addresses all of these psychological constructs? Does it even exist? The answer is found in a...Read More
Raising the Bar from Engagement to Ownership
Missing the Mark If you think employee engagement is good for business, then you aren’t alone. And if you think business isn’t good at creating employee engagement, then, again, you aren’t alone. A recent global survey by Deloitte confirms other studies and what many of us instinctively understand -- that there’s a gap between what leaders know to be important (employee engagement) and how well business creates that engagement. That’s why studies routine show that only about 40 percent of full-time workers are highly engaged. That leaves the other 60 percent feeling unsupported, detached, or disengaged.Clearly, such numbers don’t engender a great deal of confidence in the ability of businesses to provide the performance lift needed to win in a competitive global economy. Typical attempts to improve engagement often involve small changes like free coffee in the break room, relaxed dress codes, or flexible work schedules. More enlightened companies might go further by increasing opportunities for employee growth and development, more clearly defining career paths, or encouraging greater work-life balance. None of these changes are inappropriate. In fact, they are likely to be helpful in small ways—steps in the right direction. Winning in a highly competitive global marketplace, however, requires...Read More
Ten Things Accountable People Never Say
Few things are more frustrating than hearing co-workers constantly shifting blame and denying accountability for the results of their teams. What’s worse, however, is reacting to those co-workers by expressing the same types of frustrations. Accountable people are different. They take ownership of their responsibilities and take initiative to make things happen. They connect what needs to be done with why it’s important—to them, the organization, and other key stakeholders. This link sparks initiative and opens the door to a wide array of strengths that can be chosen based on the situation and the needs of the people involved. Accountability is a liberating and energizing force, but it does limit our vocabulary when interacting with people. So one way to see if accountability is an issue for you or your teams is to listen to what’s being said. Specifically, here are 10 things accountable people never say… 1. I don’t have a choice. We always have choices, but people allow their personal filters and the circumstances they’re in to limit their perception of choice. We can only choose from the options we see, so if we have a self-limiting view, we don’t see all of the options we have. 2....Read More