Accountability

September 17, 2014

Accountability

ac·count·abil·i·ty

noun ə-ˌkau̇n-tə-ˈbi-lə-tē

Definition of ACCOUNTABILITY

: the quality or state of being accountable; especially: an obligation or willingness to accept responsibility or to account for one’s actions <public officials lacking accountability>

One of our core values at ACT is “Accountability.  “Accountability breeds response-ability.” Stephen R. Covey.  The definition implies trust, self-motivation, and maturity. In fact, employees who are accountable, and who work together toward higher accountability in their workplace, make the business more efficient and productive overall. We accept our individual and team responsibilities in all of our decisions and actions in order to meet our commitments.  That commitment could be to ACT, to each other, to a supervisor, to one we supervise, to a customer, to a driver, to the motoring public or to the governmental and regulatory bodies we work with.

Mutual accountability is one of the things that make ACT better than other trucking companies.  When we say we will do something, we do it.  If we can’t do something, we don’t say that we’ll do it in the first place.   When confronted with obstacles, we think of alternatives to how we CAN accomplish the goal.  When we set goals, we all work together to achieve them.  In the fast paced world of trucking, there are a lot of moving parts, people, drivers, trucks, loads, trailers and more.  It is a daily challenge to get all those parts working together as smoothly as possible.  How do we do it every day?  We can do it because we can trust all ACT associates to be accountable, and to do what they say they will do, do what they are supposed to do, and accept responsibility for doing it.

In other companies, the people are like a snowflake in an avalanche.  It’s easy to hide and no one really notices if they are doing their part or not.  But this breaks down if an associate fails to hold him or herself accountable…Why?  Because when we don’t hold ourselves accountable, others don’t trust us….and when we are not trusted to do our part, then the group dynamic breaks down and we go backwards.  We all know what happens if everyone tries to avoid accountability.  You can see this every day if you watch politicians on the news…and what happens?  Nothing meaningful gets done while problems grow and fester.  Think of the politician… the concept is closely related to integrity.  If you are in a position which is compensated, and responsible to do a job to accomplish certain things, but you don’t do them, isn’t that really a lack of honesty?  If you are in denial of a problem, make excuses or blame others for every problem, isn’t that a lack of accountability?

The concept of accountability is closely related to the concept of teamwork.  At ACT we know that several heads are better than one and that we can accomplish so much more working together than individually.  Accountability at work is important to a business’s success as a whole. Every employee, no matter what level of seniority, is equally responsible for aiding in the success of the company. In order to achieve the goals of the company, long and short term, it is important that all people within the company work together and share accountability. Employees who work together towards the same overall goals help their workplace to become more accountable, in turn making the business more productive and efficient.

Being accountable means being not only responsible for something but also ultimately answerable for your own actions.  It is a personal choice, indispensable in our business.  That is why we consider it a core value.  Holding ourselves accountable for our roles is essential to each employee’s success.  At ACT, it is at the heart of our shared values.  Thank you for holding yourself accountable and proud every day.

Happy trucking! ~Tom