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5 Ways Operation Leaders can Create a Culture of Accountability

Wisetail | 5 min read

An accountability culture is one in which employees are individually and collectively responsible for completing work, achieving goals, and solving problems. Encourage workplace accountability with open communication, clear expectations, transparent policies, and measurable goals — all with a simple, classic productivity tool modernized for the digital age.

Coworkers examining a computer screen as a team

Building accountability

Most people learn their first accountability lesson during the elementary education years. Assignment books give school children space to document schedules, assignments, progress reports, grades, due dates, and behavior. Completed daily checklists encourage responsibility, time management, self-confidence, and persistence. Early comfort with record-keeping and reporting establishes healthy habits for future accountability.

Workplace accountability combines L&D training with essential tools for creating and maintaining an accountable company culture. Time clocks document and report working hours. Posters and signs remind employees to hold themselves accountable for workplace health and safety. But for daily operations management, a simple checklist remains the ultimate accountability tool.

Use a checklist application to assign tasks, track progress, and encourage personal and professional accountability in the workplace. From simple manager daily tasks — such as opening, closing, cleaning, and line checks — to more complex collaborative operations checklists shared among teams, this old school productivity tool remains the foundation of future process efficiency.

Woman creating checklists to help herself stay organized

Compliance check

Compliance fulfills your company’s obligation to industry regulations and documentation rules. Compliance checklists can connect with eLearning tools and other relevant systems to provide a centralized “single source of truth,” monitor compliance throughout your organization, and reinforce the knowledge and performance rules that allow your company to conduct business safely and legally.

When your company’s learning management system (LMS) includes user-friendly compliance checklists, leadership can easily and efficiently manage, track, and report compliance activity. Connect business operations tasks with L&D resources to help team members understand task reasoning, keep operations running, identify and close skills gaps, manage continuous change, and maintain regulatory compliance.

Checklist solutions also address the need to reduce interference from errant thoughts and behaviors that may compromise an employee’s ability to complete work efficiently. Human brains perform better with concrete cues, like those provided by the proverbial “to-do” list. Operations checklists, instantly accessible via LMS apps, dampen anxiety and increase and improve both business and employee capability

Checklists provide guidance, structure, and reliable documentation of completed tasks as well as method of completion. With a well-designed checklist and a team trained to use it properly, managers need not worry about employees missing critical steps on any given task. Reporting features can be used to verify processes and identify potential errors for further investigation.

One check at a time

Organizational process design can be complex. In addition to the if/then variables that occur as each task is marked complete, checklists may need to be completed by different team members. Today, operations checklists ensure the completion of every step. Tasks may be consistently assigned to the same team member(s), but it’s not required for completion. 

Secure, mobile connectivity allows any team member to access the LMS checklist application and verify completion in a manner consistent with every other member. With a daily checklist, employees can plan and manage their days more efficiently, which allows for more focus on those expected tasks without having to worry about missing something.

Checklists drive daily operations tasks to enhance consistency, efficiency, and productivity.

Accountability check

Task tracking and documentation encourage accountability by creating more transparent processes and an overview of workflow progress, so stakeholders can easily understand project and compliance status. An operations checklist keeps things moving, and prevents missing items within the task completion process, especially when teams collaborate or share responsibilities for different project points. Accountability prevents problems from snowballing, allowing your business to stay ahead of risk and preempt issues caused by unintentional errors.

LMS and eLearning tools also offer opportunities for escalation paths. In addition to defining action items, assigning responsibilities, and setting deadlines, leadership can define escalation paths if tasks are not completed on time. Escalation paths provide accountability for ongoing processes and prevent the delay of dependent items.

For collaborative projects, shared checklists deliver enhanced transparency and responsibility with visibility and documentation for team members as they complete their subtasks. Collaboration is challenging when team members are unclear about who is responsible for each task. With dynamic checklists available to every team member, employees are empowered to work together, track progress, and rely on their colleagues.

A company culture of accountability combines responsibility — at the individual, team, department, and organization levels — with comprehensive, accessible systems for learning, compliance, and operational task management. An LMS native, custom checklist solution is a classic tool reimagined for modern business operations.

To discover more ways your business can build accountability and solve problems, read Wisetail’s whitepaper Creating an Agile Organizational Learning Culture.

Learn How to Create an Agile Organizational Learning Culture