3 Reasons Why Extreme Accountability Can Make All the Difference in Your Professional Life

3 Reasons Why Extreme Accountability Can Make All the Difference in Your Professional Life

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Once upon a time, all of the leadership, productivity, and business success guides you’d ever come across would have been written by successful business tycoons, entrepreneurs, or people whose entire lives and careers had been built around the foundation of trying to understand and distil the best productivity strategies, mindset mastery techniques, and so on.


These days, things have changed a bit.


These days, some of the most critically acclaimed commentators on business are retired U.S. Navy SEALs.


Jocko Willink and Leif Babin are two retired SEALs who, in 2015, published the book “Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win”, which went on to become a #1 New York Times Bestseller.


The book was aimed at business leaders. It’s central concept of extreme accountability — or Extreme Ownership — might transform your life as a burgeoning entrepreneur. Here’s why.


Clients want to work with problem solvers, not blame-shifters


The idea of Extreme Ownership, or accountability, involves you taking full responsibility for things that go wrong, and always asking yourself what you could have done better, how you could fix the problem, and what you could do differently next time to avoid a repeat.


This approach, if applied properly, will naturally tend to endear you to clients. This is because clients desperately want to work with problem solvers, not with blame shifters.


If you run a flooring company and one of your machines is damaged on-site by someone who is not a member of your team, and this results in a poor job, Extreme Ownership says you should accept this as your fault. After all, why was the machine left unsupervised in the first place?


You could make excuses, and those excuses would be fair. But they would do nothing to make the client feel good about using your services.


When you accept responsibility, you empower yourself to make a real impact, and you notice more opportunities


Accepting complete responsibility for whatever happens in your life and business seems like a tough deal. And it is, because, although you can still fire and discipline people who drop the ball, you have to treat their shortcomings as your fault, on some level.


The flip-side to this, though, is that accepting responsibility in this way also empowers you to make a real impact. It forces you to notice more opportunities. It crafts an identity for you to step into, as “the boss”. The one who gets things done.


That identity, alone, can make you infinitely more resilient and capable than you were before.


An accountability-oriented mindset will filter down through your company and can increase overall efficiency


The boss of the company always, essentially, projects their personality to their employees, and so creates, or contributes to, the company culture.


A boss who is always looking to pass blame, therefore, feeds into a toxic company culture where everyone else is also always looking to pass blame.


On the other hand, a boss who adopts a complete-accountability mindset, encourages a complete-accountability mindset, company-wide.


Suffice to say, this kind of mindset on a company-wide basis can radically boost productivity, reduce friction, and lead to an encouraging and fruitful working environment.

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