Renewed Through Accountability

“Accountability breeds response-ability.”

Stephen Covey

We all need a little accountability in our lives – that necessary kick in the butt necessary to keep us on the right path.

I’m working on my High Performance Leadership project necessary to earn my Distinguished Toastmasters (DTM) for Toastmasters International. For those unfamiliar, Toastmasters International is a world-wide organization of local clubs designed to help people improve their leadership and communication skills. And the DTM is the highest level of achievement in the organization (kind of like the Eagle Scout Rank associated with Scouting). In order to earn the DTM, I’ve given over 50 speeches and completed many leadership activities and roles.

The High Performance Leadership (HPL) project is the capstone necessary to earn the DTM, and I’ve been putting off my project for over a year. With a deadline of June 30, 2021 (which was extended a year thanks to the COVID pandemic), I only have a month to finalize the requirements of this project and to submit my paperwork which is required to make the DTM official.

To help move me along in this process and to ensure I meet the requirements by the deadline, I asked a couple of co-workers and fellow Toastmasters to hold me accountable. Last week, I made significant progress towards my goal thanks to the timely and repeated “prodding” of these individuals.

We need accountability in our lives.

My wife is one of my accountability partners for life, marriage, and family. I meet with a group of guys weekly who also hold me accountable in areas of faith, fitness, and finances. I meet with a group of entrepreneurs bi-weekly who hold each other accountable to moving forward in our businesses and side pursuits. And I meet with a group of leaders in my company on a monthly basis to hold each other accountable to leading well in our organization.

The idea of accountability can be scary. After all, we have to be transparent in order for accountability to be effective. We have to be willing to share our fears and our failings with others. Accountability is worth overcoming these fears.

Accountability is powerful. It can push us over obstacles holding us back, and accountability allows us to rise to our full potential.

One of the reasons I started the Stretched Men Group several years ago was to provide a place where men could be held accountable to stretch and take steps forward to become better husbands, better fathers, better leaders, and better men. If you are interested in joining this kind of a group, let me know (or visit by leaving a comment below.

And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

Hebrews 10:24-25 (NIV)