Why You Need an Accountability Partner Right Now

It is so helpful to have an accountability partner

At a moment when people are facing massive disruption, working from home or worrying about having no work at all, it helps to have a buddy who can help you keep moving forward. From CEOs to solopreneurs, the idea of an accountability partner is catching on as a way to do your best work. Here are a few pointers.

What is an accountability partner?

An accountability partner is someone who you can regularly catch up with. He or she will help you to check on what you are doing and the progress you have made towards your commitments and goals.

We already do this in our daily lives. In the office, you are accountable to your boss and your team may have weekly status updates. Personal trainers or physical therapists assign their clients exercises to do between sessions. Executives hire professional coaches to help them define success and root out behaviors that hold them back from being purposeful, authentic leaders.

Uber-coach, Marshall Goldsmith, even pays someone to call him every day to listen and record his responses as he walks through a set of questions he devised to keep himself on track.  The reality is, we are almost always more responsible to others than we are to ourselves.

Why do I need one, especially now?

These days, with the coronavirus requiring many people to work at home, it is easy to find yourself adrift.

There is no one coming over to your desk asking you to do something unless you count your five-year old’s Pavlovian response to any serious video calls. Even the forecasts and goals we use to keep us on track seem like mere fairy tales instead of credible maps to a realistic destination.

Suddenly the productivity you thought you would have if only you had no distractions is within reach. Yet progress seems slower than ever. Giving up, or at least treading water in a sea of uncertainty seems like a viable, maybe even smart, option.

Enter the accountability partner. Someone who is invested in your success, can celebrate the small wins and ask questions to keep you on track to meet your goals, all from the comfort of your video conference or phone.

How do I get one?

Accountability partners are often best when you have a specific goal in mind and need to get from A to B. Chunking big goals into small enough pieces that you can track weekly progress is helpful. Asking someone to help you be accountable for “launching your business” is a bit steep but asking them to help you launch your website may be more reasonable.

Look for someone you feel you can trust, who will be non-judgmental and maybe on a similar journey to you.  Maybe he or she is in the process of finding a job, starting a company, an exercise program, going through values work.

You can also join groups, sometimes called masterminds. This is useful for people with a common journey or experience. Members can collectively help you define and give feedback on your goals and challenge your ideas and approach. Our Future Proof Course has Accountability Thursdays where people hop on zoom to update each other on the latest actions they have taken towards their goals and give feedback and virtual high-fives to each other.

In times of uncertainty, often the small, tactical wins accumulate to put you in a better place to succeed when things turn around. It’s easy to put your head down into the sand but you owe it to yourself, and to your accountability partner, to persist and move forward!

As the African proverb says, “If you want to go fast go alone. If you want to go far, go together“.

To join the Future Proof Course and enjoy your own accountability group, visit https://returnoftheartisan.com/course.