THE obligation of an individual/organisation to be accountable for his/its activities, accept responsibility for them and disclose the results in a transparent manner constitutes accountability.

Brian P. Moran defines it as “simply taking ownership of one’s actions and results”.

There is always a risk in our doings and we are the ones who see things happening the way we want them to happen. The fact is, successful people are accountable.

Michael Hyatt considers the vitality of accountability in leaders and individuals.

“When you make a mistake, own up. It will restore people’s confidence and increase your influence.”

People will respect you as it shows humility and willingness to learn. Hence, learning what responsibility entails is a must. Train yourself to be responsible before taking charge of a task.

A truly responsible person claims total responsibility for whatever happens. It is easy to claim responsibility when things go well, but hard when they do not.

Instead of figuring out who is to blame or worrying about how things could have turned out, the best way is to deal with the matter and find a solution.

Once you have accepted responsibility, empower yourself to stand up and take charge, but be sure to be accountable in the end.

We need to be clear about our desires, what we need and what we can contribute. Remember to never blow your own trumpet about something you did, but keep stock of your talents and triumphs, and let the higher-ups know who you are and how you contribute.

And, when a problem occurs, look first to yourself and ask these questions: what is the problem? What am I doing, or not doing, to contribute to the problem? What can I do differently to help resolve the problem? How will I be accountable for the result?

Your willingness to answer for the results of your choices, actions and behaviour counts.

Do not confuse responsibility, which is the mindset you must have before taking on a task, with accountability, which is the action of owning up to the result of the said task.

Be your own “accountability cop” and police yourself even if nobody holds you accountable. A little integrity will not hurt anybody.

If things do not happen as planned, stay positive and do something different.

Most of us do not like to fail or be seen to fail. We need to learn from our mistakes and rectify them. It is important to be accountable as it not only ensures success, but also builds character.

AZIZI AHMAD, Kuala Lumpur

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