Social Citizen’s Top 10. #7: Developing Personal Accountability

Posted on April 29, 2009. Filed under: Top 10 April 2009 | Tags: , , , , |

Originally posted September 24, 2008.

In the past year, I have grown in my community involvement and have begun to take on some leadership roles with various community organizations.  As I grow into my own leadership style, I am learning to focus on keeping myself accountable.  Strong personal accountability is not only important for getting things done, but also reacting to crisis or keeping your actions ethical.

As says,

Personal accountability allows you to move away from a mindset where things happen ‘to you’ in your life without your consent or influence, and embrace your role in the way your life is shaped by moving to a place of true power and freedom.

It is important for every individual, not just in leadership to maintain personal accountability.  Taking control of a situation and not blaming others for it.

When working in the community, I think it’s easy to fall into saying, “if only”, instead of planning for the future.  With a strong accountability to myself as a leader I am able to plan for the future of the boards I work on, and develop stronger leadership skills in the process.

College doesn’t necessarily teach you the skills of personal accountability.  You may learn about it in a leadership class, but you don’t truly develop your own ethical principles and patterns for growth until you enter the “real world”.

My growth to maintaining personal accountability over the past 2 years, has been extremely tough for me.  I had to learn that taking responsibility for a crisis, is much better than failing again.  Taking accountability for my mistakes and for planning better for the future of the organizations I am leading had helped me to better learn from those mistakes and from each specific situation.  I like to reflect on all decisions made and think about what I could have done better, what may have been the more ethical way of doing it, how can I plan better in the future.

Gaining these skills, which I am still working on, has been the toughest experience I have had in all the work I do, and I am sure it is a challenge for many other young nonprofit professionals.  Being accountable for leading community work is hard, and I hope to continue to grow in this area.

How have you been fostering personal accountability?


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